Following Rainbows

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?

30 thoughts on “Following Rainbows

  1. While I like imagination and making stuff up for entertainment & even hopefullness (remember I’m Awake & Dreaming), I feel it’s more fun to learn about the rainbows and still dream about it. Mother nature & the Universe is so interesting, wonderful and beautiful on it’s own yet we can dream and let our imagination run wild with our exciting stories.
    So if I were your colleague I would have said “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. ——– but I see baby unicorns at the end of them, frolicking and drinking the coloured juices and look there is a little guy in green sitting on a pot filled with gold coins” 😀


  2. Hi,
    I’m with you on the rainbows, they are magical, and I love seeing them. We use the word rainbow a lot as well, if I see something really colourful, I usually say “It has all the colours of a rainbow” I am sure I have said this many times. 🙂
    You chose a beautiful picture, it’s gorgeous.


    1. I’m sure I’ve even heard you say it on your blog, Mags. It is a lovely expression. It is a great pic – there are some really good photographers out there!


    1. I haven’t ever seen a double rainbow but it would be so exciting if I did. WOW. I’d be jumping up and down, writingfeemail!!!!


  3. I rarely seen rainbows but when I do, I’m always amaze by them. there’s something magical about them that is not easily explain. not with science anyway. I think rainbows makes one want to dream.


  4. And what’s not magical of a trick of light? The beauty of even a human-made light spectrum is stunning. Mr. Crankmeister, even you can’t take away its awe. You may have set up the light trick, but you didn’t create those colors.


    1. That rainbow on your Facebook page is fabulous, Travelrat. Great shot. WOW – a circular rainbow. Now that would be incredible!!!


  5. I can only feel sorry for your crankmeister. He’ll not only never find the pot of gold, he’ll never see the little folk lurking under toadstools or catch a glimpse of Big Foot while hiking in the woods. Everybody knows that magic hides from those who don’t believe.


    1. Yes, Patti, Yes. All he’ll ever see are the other cranky people like him. Talk about gloomy. Thinking about the magic of rainbows is much more fun!


    1. Typical bloke…LOL. I have been called many things but never a miramagical delight. I am honoured. What a compliment. Thanks so much, Gabe!


  6. that photo is absolutely stunning! We had a lovely rainbow over here last week. Luckily I was able to snap a picture of it. Rainbows are just so magical, they make my heart smile.


  7. rainbows are wonderful! We get plenty of them in Scotland – sometimes double rainbows!

    I remember once seeing a large group of people in the centre of Edinburgh who had all stopped to take photos of a rainbow just above one of the loveliest of our buildings, so plenty of people still do have the sense of wonder!



  8. Sad indeed is the soul who can see no beauty in a rainbow! They speak of promise and whisper to us that all is ok, life is good! I once looked up to see two rainbows crossed overhead during a very dark time in my life. I took it as a sign that I was going to be ok, and just look… I AM! I think your rainbow was a sign for you too! 🙂 Funny thing, I was just thinking about rainbows on the way to work this morning, we must have been very much in tune!


    1. I agree with you so much, Josie. How sad is it not to see the beauty in a rainbow? What’s that all about? I would be desolate if I ever got into that frame of mind. They DO speak of promise. Beautifully put!


  9. Everyone needs a little whimsy in their lives, even mr cranky pants. It’s how we while away te humdrum of our every day lives. Plus it’s FUN. lol


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