Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Rain, Rain, Go Away!

Rain, rain, go away.
Come again another day.
Little Johnny wants to play,
So rain, rain, go away!

The rainy season is nearly over, however, it seems the heavens decided to give us one last rainy day before it gets really hot.

In English, we have many ways to describe rain…

If it’s only raining a little, just a drop here and there, we say, “It’s spitting.”

If it’s a little heavier, just enough to need an umbrella, we say, “It’s drizzling.”

If it’s just average rain, we say, “It’s raining.”

If it’s much heavier, like it was earlier today, we say, “It’s pouring.”

When it’s raining really, really heavily, we say, "It’s raining cats and dogs!”

That last expression originated in England 3 or 4 hundred years ago. Back then, cities were much dirtier than they are now. Buildings were very close together, and people threw their kitchen scraps out their windows. Dogs & cats would live off the scraps that piled up between the buildings. When they died, their bodies stayed stuck between the buildings until very strong rains washed them out into the streets. When people passing by saw the bodies, they would jokingly say the bodies had fallen from the sky with the rain.

Next time it rains, try to describe what type of rain it is using one of the expressions above.

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