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Unexpected Facts about Rain

Plamena M.Plamena M.

Rain is an ever more common sight throughout the fall months. It's always wise to have an umbrella and boots on hand. And while the grey mood outside rubs off on the majority of people in the fall and winter, others love watching how the raindrops trickle down their windows.

The falling raindrops bring a sense of nostalgia with them. The reasons are complex. Firstly, they remind us of summer's passing. The hours of daylight are reduced and cold weather sets in. But there are a number of phenomenal facts about rain that few people are aware of and we'd like to share.

1. The place where it rains most frequently is the mountain of Waialeale in Kauaʻi, Hawaii. It rains 350 days a year there.

2. In the 17th century, Great Britain had passed a law stating that a meteorologist could be legally killed if he was wrong in predicting the weather. His death was 100% guaranteed if he forecast pouring rain and it did not come.

3. Rain has a color. But not every rain. It can come in various tones. The most common such is red rain, which occurs most often in the Indian municipality of Kottayam. The rain contains enough quantities of dust that stain it red and make it visible to the naked eye. There have been cases of black, green and yellow rain.

4. The game of darts was invented thanks to rain. Many years ago, it started to rain during an archery competition. The contestants fled to the local tavern and continued their tournament by throwing short arrows at a target on the wall.


5. Grass looks greener during rain. Each individual raindrop contains dissolved nitrogen. It is a natural fertilizer and causes grass to take on a bright green hue.

6. The sound rain produces comes from bubbles. Everyone has heard the sound raindrops make when they hit the ground. It results from the bubbles that pop under the water.

7. Rain doesn't smell. The aroma we pick up on when it rains actually consists of isolated actin and cyanobacteria. The chemical compound we smell is called geosmin, which appears after the first fast-falling drops hit. The compound isn't produced by the rain itself but by its contact with various classes of microorganisms.

8. Rain falls at a maximum speed of 18-22 miles per hour. This is due to the shapes of the raindrops. They interact with the atmosphere and accelerate tremendously.

9. The most rainfall is recorded in the Indian town of Cherrapunji - 24 460 mm annually. In the town of Winesburg, Ohio, it's been raining on the same day for the last 100 years - July 29. In Thailand, in turn, it only rains during the night, while in Cuba - only during the afternoon siesta. If you find yourself in Portugal and it rain, you have the right by law to not go to work.