Ophelia Festival 2007All this rain has me thinking, there are two camps of people, those who are annoyed by rain and those who revel in it. Around here the earth has submersed herself to drink deeply. There are puddles everywhere and the toads are singing. Water is a miracle liquid for so many things. We don’t just bathe in it but we come from it. We spiritualize it by baptizing our babies in it, we fight over it, and use it for torture, and we have agencies to forecast for it. I had a roommate I shared a running joke with. Whenever anything would go wrong, a bad date, a bad haircut, a bad day at work, or we’d just wake up feeling sad the first thing we’d tell the other is, “take a bath.”

Water obviously displaces your weight and your blood pressure drops, but in many cultures bathing is also something more than that. When I was in Japan the idea of a communal bath is a ritual and part of their culture and one they credit as resulting in a well-socialized public. If you ever get to San Francisco you I highly recommend a visit to this place. It will give you a good idea of what I’m talking about. It’s a spiritual experience that will have you appreciating water in a whole new way.

(Image from the Italian 2007 Ophelia Fesitval)

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