Flakes of snow and easily melting ice that fell three times this past week have been replaced by ordinary raindrops that have taken up the precipitation mantle and fall in an unsteady pattern from the heavens. It’s easy to be romanced by the fluffy stuff, especially when your micro-flat is well stocked with the staples and other key necessary munitions of weather-preparedness — sweet treats — and you have little need to venture outside. And while I’m often irritated by rainfall, because it dares to fall whenever I have a hankering to wear sandals or some other article of clothing or footwear that provides adequate protection from the wet stuff, the heavily blanketed skies that look ever-ready to purge their water stores induce in me a sense of pity so that when it occasionally rains here I’m hardly bothered. Out of these overcast skies emerges a nuanced canvas of greys, taupes, tans, sands, slates, and even more hues often grouped together under the category of “grey” or “greyish brown.” Against such a canvas, the occasions of color outside of this spectrum seem to beckon with greater urgency. The orange life jackets and life preservers gathered on a dock awaiting enthusiastically the next Thames boat cruise group; hints of violet and pumpkin in a sea of black and grey overcoats; the shiny silver buckle on a modern briefcase glistens as its owner rushes home from work, or perhaps work from home.
It is perhaps why occasional blue skies in London feel magical and other-wordly — a sort of meteorological explication of what Mick Jagger croons almost patronizingly: “You can’t always get what you want.” But perhaps we might take another riff on the Stones and wonder whether what we think we want is sometimes hampered by the limitations of our own imagination. And thus how might we feed our minds so that the boundaries of our imaginations are actually limitless and do not, instead, fall into some sort of assessable, easily discernable rubric? And, lest we forget the rest of Jagger’s helpful advice: “But if you try sometimes/You just might find you get what you need.”
How, then, can we see the color in greys? And perhaps see grey as colorful itself?