Tonight it is raining in Oakland.

Rain is a wonderful thing, and something that I really appreciate here in the American West.

I've lived through 25 winters, 25 summers, and as many rainstorms and blizzards as you'd fit in there. Tornado warnings were a regular occurance, as were power outages and lightning strikes in my back yard. The things that were part of life in Ohio.

The first significant rainfall I experienced in Oakland is a thing I still think back to. I was in my apartment, relaxing. I heard the rain and was ecstatic. I immediately ran out into the street--barefoot--and walked down the stairs on Fairmount to go through Echo Glen.

The downpour continued. Occasionally it relented back down to a sprinkle. Clouds above lit from the city below struggled to maintain their composure. Without warning, it turned torrential. The amber sky heaved and gave up its resolve to hold it in; cheerfully, almost. The streetlights swayed in the wind and the end of the street dissolved in the mist.

It is raining in Oakland tonight. I'm in a new apartment since my last rainstorm. My window is cracked open. The radiator hisses and gurgles, but I can still hear the water falling from the sky. The trees chatter as they route drops into trickles into streams into puddles on the ground for rubber boots on the sidewalk to splash through them. The city soaks it in, quenching the landscape. If only for tonight.

Drink up, Oakland.