On the way out this morning I saw a rainbow. It doesn’t matter how old I get or how jaded I sometimes feel but the sight of a rainbow fills me with delight (and I rarely use the word delight.)
There’s something about a rainbow that is reminiscent of the happiest moments of childhood. Days filled with throwing stones in puddles, searching for ladybugs in the shrubbery and counting the clouds in the sky that look like sheep.
The colours of a rainbow really are a sensation, a marvel. The arc of the rainbow is carefully formed, seeing to rise from a distant point on the earth up to a part of the sky that could lead to another magical world better than our own.
And then there is the pot of gold. I’m sure we’ve all thought about looking for it, finding it. Once when I was about ten I put on boots, packed my lunch in a teatowel (carrying it on a little stick like Dick Whittington) and set off to find that pot of gold. I walked for what seemed like hours but of course, the rainbow didn’t get any closer and that pot of gold remained elusive. I’ll never forget, however, the zest for living that filled me as I followed that rainbow. I felt as if all the magic in the world that I believed in had actually gathered before me as I walked, whispering : The good stuff, it’s really out there.
And it was.
I happened to mention the rainbow to a guy I’m working with at the moment, how elated I felt upon seeing it, how no matter how bad I was feeling at the time a rainbow would always cheer me up.
“I don’t know why you’re making such a fuss about a rainbow,” he said, looking at me as if I was a simpleton. ” A rainbow is just a meteorological phenomenon where sunlight is spread out into its spectrum of colors and diverted to the eye of the observer by water droplets. I could create a rainbow right now using a glass of water placed in front of a window.”
Way to burst my bubble, buddy. Or break up my rainbow.
I’m used to this guy. I refer to him as the crankmeister. He’s brilliant at what he does but seems to be lacking in soul. Call me a daydreaming, fairytale-loving fool but sometimes I think that having an explanation for every little thing is too clinical, too closed-minded. What about chance, possibility, happenstance? What about imagination?
The crankmeister got me thinking, he got me thinking about those of us who follow rainbows and those of us who spurn them, dismissing them as a trick of the light.
I don’t care if they can be recreated in a controlled laboratory setting, I don’t care if there is no pot of gold at the end of them. Seeing rainbows, following rainbows, breathing in the colours make me feel there are stories, poems and songs I haven’t even heard yet, waiting to be unleashed.
I won’t ever spurn rainbows, I will always follow them. They make me believe in the wonders of the world.
** Unfortunately, I left my camera at home when I saw the rainbow – so I found this gorgeous one on Deviant Art by Scotto. Isn’t she lovely?