Rained Out of Edgefest

Aug 1, 2013 by

Failing to shelter myself from the rain with my purse

Failing to shelter myself from the rain with my purse

          Bursting with excitement yesterday morning, Olivia and I drove to North York in the bright sun, windows down and music blaring. After a quick stop at her nonna’s house (most nonnas live in North York, by the way), we were off to Downsview Park for Edgefest with four bananas in hand. (My Italian readers, you know how it is. For my non-Italian readers, I’ll explain. Nonnas cannot let people leave their homes without feeding them. It’s against their nature. Since we were in a rush, literally stopping for a minute with the car still running, Nonna Gina went into a frenzy at the realization that there was no time to equip us with a five-course Italian feast to go. She settled for dramatically forcing bananas into Olivia’s arms, likely panicking inside with wild assumptions that we’d starve, pass out, and die without more food for breakfast. We don’t tell her that we almost never eat breakfast. She would have a heart attack.) Having successfully parked for free (there’s almost always a way friends!) about 45 minutes away from Downsview by foot, we snacked on our bananas as we embarked on our trek. As we walked, we marvelled at the beautiful weather. Given the summer of 2013’s typical forecast, we were very lucky not to be under a raincloud, especially with Edgefest’s no umbrella policy.Mother Nature is such a tease. By the time we arrived at the gates, it was overcast and sprinkling rain. While not unbearable, I was not impressed by my curling hair and the chills running through me as icy drops pattered down. Nonetheless, I was at Edgefest and in high anticipation for Mother Mother’s performance in a few hours. Rain was not going to damper my day, at least not figuratively.

          The bipolar weather made the day feel as if it was split into more than one. We could not believe that The Neighbourhood’s chill performance, which we watched while laying in the grass beneath a sunny sky, was the same day as the Mother Mother set to follow, which we rocked out to despite cold rain.

          At 6:30 pm, following an afternoon of living on the cusp of a potential downpour, I turned to Olivia to ask, “How badly do you want to see The Lumineers?”

          She shrugged her shoulders. “I don’t really care about The Lumineers,” she said.

          Breathing a sigh of relief, I suggested that we go. “I wanted to see The Lumineers, but their songs are so overplayed on the radio now that I think I’ll live if I don’t hear them live. I’m not sure if seeing them is worth sticking out the cold until they come on in two and a half hours,” I said.

          “Me neither,” Olivia concurred.

          “The only reason that I’m hesitant to leave is that I feel guilty not watching all of the performances that I spent the money to see,” I admitted. “Okay, happiness experiment,” I channelled my inner decision maker, “I just saw The Neighbour and Mother Mother, which were my top reasons for coming to Edgefest. They were amazing, I had fun, and now it would make me happier to be dry than to watch The Lumineers.” Talking more to myself than to Olivia, I confirmed my choice, “Okay, let’s go before it starts raining again.”

          On our way back to the car, just as I had voiced the thought that the rain may have actually stopped for the evening, it came falling down harder than it had all day. My feet sliding in my pretty flats lined with wet lace, I walked for nearly an hour to our free parking spot in a distant lot. (Being frugal prompts the most hilarious situations. Many of my favourite memories wouldn’t have ever happened if I weren’t broke.) Much of the way, I sang Albatross by Big Wreck, which I’ve had stuck in my head since Sunday night. My feet were sliced by rocks that had snuck into my shoes, and my eyes burned as violent raindrops bounced off my glasses and viciously darted between my eyelids. Every time Olivia looked back at me, I joined her in amusement at the thought of the picture I imagined her seeing: my clothes dripping; my eyes squinting; and my lips repeatedly forming the words, “That’s okay, and I’m alright. I guess I’ll be lost again for one more night” – the only ones of the song that I could remember. It was raining so hard and we were so wet that we didn’t even notice when we walked right through lawn sprinklers halfway to the car.

          Unable to stop giggling and cursing Mother Nature for being such a goddamn bitch this summer, I called out to the sky for my car, “Little Echo, where are you? Little Echo?” We still had a long way to go.

          Pointlessly avoiding puddles and praying that the bus coming down the street was not about to splash me with murky water, I shouted to Olivia through the rain, “I love my happiness experiment! It’s pouring rain, I’m drenched, I’m missing The Lumineers, yet I’m having so much fun right now!”

          “I know! Today could have gone completely differently,” she said.

          “Exactly!” I agreed. “It’s all about attitude!”

          Finally in view of my car, Olivia screamed back at me, “We’re in the home stretch, girl!”

          “My Beaut, my beautiful Beaut!” I yelled in excitement.

          By the time we reached the car, Olivia looked like she had just walked out of the shower and I looked like I had just walked out of hell. Unable to control our ongoing laughter, I turned the key in the ignition and hurried to turn on the heat (yes, on July 31), only to realize that the engine light was blue on my dashboard (something that should only ever happen in the winter) and cool air was blowing toward us. My frigid fingers fumbled to turn it off. Olivia and I turned to each other with facial expressions that reflected our fears that the day after tomorrow was coming, before erupting into further laughter at the sight of each other.

          Happy to be sheltered, I planned the rest of my night aloud, “When we get home, I’m going to curl up in my bed and listen to music as I fall asleep to the rain. If I weren’t so health conscious, I’d make hot chocolate. It’s such a hot chocolate night. Isn’t that sad? It’s July!”

          “I know! You’re going to listen to In My Veins on repeat, aren’t you?” Olivia questioned in an accusatory tone.

          My mouth dropped in shock. “How did you know?”

          “Because it’s raining and you feel nostalgic, which means you miss Rome,” she answered, matter-of-factly. (In My Veins by Andrew Belle is our Roman rainy day song.)

          Impressed by how well she knows me, I raised my hand to initiate a high five. (Olivia thinks this is cool. I do not, but I have best friend obligations.) As our hands went for the close, I proudly beamed, “Best friends for life!”

Happiness Tip: Laugh it off!

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