I can hear the pitter-patter of frozen rain hitting my bedroom windows tonight. The sound is instantly comforting to me. It draws me back to being five years old, sitting on the back step of our small brick ranch house, looking at the rain, and listening to the sound as the drops fell in a soothing rhythm on the metal awning that covered part of the concrete patio.
We sat outside in all but the worst of storms, enjoyed the protection of the awning, and breathed in the moist air. This was the only time I remember my family being calm and happy, my sister and I sitting next to each other on the step with our parents nearby, no one talking, everyone listening to the chorus of raindrops that seemed to set us all free.
The house sat on an acre, with half an acre in the back yard, a fence encircling it, and apple trees lining the back of the property. A horse pasture sat at the rear of the property. It wasn't ours, but as a child I thought it kind of was. The pasture had large horses as well as ponies. I thought the ponies were the babies, but apparently they were just small like me. One pony in particular loved to stand at the fence and eat the apples. He would almost let us pet him if we walked up slowly, but just as we reached out our hands he would run.
On the rainy days, the horses were never outside. I always imagined the horses were under a cover just like ours, relaxing and enjoying the rain's calming song while they stayed warm and dry.