Who said it never rains in Los Angeles? They were so wrong.
This morning I managed to get out by myself for a bit.
The weather was wild. The mountains were hidden under the weight of clouds, the rain was coming sideways, and the recent spring-like weather seemed to have skedaddled.
A feature of L.A. life is that supermarket car parks seem to be sprawled out around the buildings. There are are no sun shade cloths, and covered parking only really applies to the multi-level parking structures. I guess this is because people focus on the lack of rain.
It means that in summer, your car turns into an oven. I've always wondered why - for such a warm, sunny climate - sun shade cloths haven't been installed (like the ones on rooftop levels of car parks in Sydney). Palm trees may look pretty, but they don't exactly provide shade.
When it does actually rain, you get soaked - like I did today.
Driving home, I didn't mind being wet. I'd managed to acquire more hot cross buns, and was coasting along nicely on a caffeine buzz, feeling toasty warm inside the car.
I had the heat blowing onto my hands to thaw them out, and the steady vawp vawp vawp of the windscreen wipers transported me back to being a kid again. There's something so soothing about that sound, and feeling cocooned from the immediate wet landscape whizzing by.
And what a landscape this morning. The palm trees were swaying and the streets were littered with palm branches - resembling Miami in hurricane season instead of L.A. in spring.
The way these palm trees punctuated every corner I turned, every street I drove down... they reminded me of the inverted exclamation marks used for Spanish.
The soundtrack in my head was L.A. Woman by The Doors.
"The cars hiss by my window, like the waves down on the beach... "
It's an album that my parents played a lot when I was little, and an album that I know by heart. Every nuance, every beat.
That whole album is my lullabye. Even in my twenties, if I had trouble falling asleep at night, all I had to do was listen to L.A. Woman.
Tonight, that won't be necessary, though. I have the rain drumming on my window, and that sound is almost as soothing for me as Mr Mojo Risin's voice...