I was awoken in the night by a strange sound. One I hadn't heard in a long time. It took me a moment or two, while coming to consciousness, to work out what it was.
It was rain, against the window. Not heavy rain or wind or thunder, but the gentle pitter-patter of raindrops.
We badly need rain in Cyprus. And there's an example of the classic British understatement. The reservoirs are so low, they are liable to dry out completely this summer. There is a de-salination plant, but it can't cope with the increasing water demands of the growing population. Not to mention the tourists, who are not even supposed to know about the serious lack of water on the island.
Even our neighbours seem to be taking it seriously, at last. No longer do I see them out with hosepipes cleaning their patios or cars. I noticed someone washing his car recently using a bucket of water - I suppose it's too much to hope that they would cheerfully drive dirty cars, like people do in the UK when there's a water shortage. And like we do most of the time, anyway.
So it was good to hear rain, even if it was quite light. I dozed off but didn't really sleep, and when I finally got up I was pleased to see that the rain had evidently been heavier than I had thought. The neighbourhood - and our balconies - looked very wet.
About 8am there was an extremely heavy downpour, but it only lasted around ten minutes. Since then it's been sunny and very windy. So all the streets and rooftops have dried.. but I hope there was at least some slight effect.