The droplets of water snaking down the window remind you of something you heard recently - Paris is a wetter city than London. English rain comes little and often, but in Paris, when it rains, it really rains.
Tonight the skies have opened up and you’re stuck in this bar. The staff are unfriendly, and the beer is warm and expensive, but you’re still better off here than outside with streaks of rain wiring down your neck.
Next to you, someone is saying something about the wife and the children he never sees. Slurred words, uninvited hands on shoulders and foul smelling breath. Misery loves company, but this guy can keep the self-pity he’s trying to wipe off on everyone.
You take a step back to the window and watch the puddles of water gush along the gutters. Through the vapour mist a figure appears, dressed in green with luminous cuffs and collars. With his plastic broom, he’s pushing the city waste deep down into the sewers.
Suddenly you open the door and leap outside. The beads of rain sting your eyes and make you gulp for air, but the road sweeper has shown you something important. City rain washes and cleanses, driving dust and dirt off of the streets. It should be something to embrace, not to take shelter from.
Paris rain never lasts for long. The pavements now sing and shine under the orange streelight glow, and the air smells almost fresh again. The wet drips have reached down to the small of your back, but you now know that everything is going to be fine.