Wednesday, 16 October 2019

The consistency, yet diversity, of Prague's rains

By Narmin Ismiyeva | Prague Daily Monitor |
8 August 2019

Every city has its unique rain culture. Prague is not an exception. Its rains are as diverse as students, who come here for Erasmus exchange programs. Recently, my colleagues and I came up with three basic characteristics of Prague rains. These, of course, provide a very general idea of what Prague rains look and feel like without specifying all the possible varieties (if one goes into the depths of the topic, they face the risk of drowning).

We proudly present the above-mentioned characteristics as follows:

1) When it pours, it pours hard but short. Prague is known for its showers when the rain is so heavy that one can see nothing but a wall of falling water. That’s when people start to run clenching their umbrellas in their hands or plastic bags above their heads in an attempt to reach the closest hiding point (a metro station, a tram stop, a shop, etc.). Here, they can catch their breath, listen to the joyful sounds of thunderstorms and observe lightning crisscrossing the skies while waiting for the rain to stop. Luckily, the Prague showers do not last long - pouring for five-ten minutes, they stop, giving the pedestrians a chance to run to their next hiding point. Then, the story starts all over again.

2) When it drizzles, it drizzles. Prague drizzle is a timid rain. It starts with a few drops shyly falling on the ground. Then, everything stops, as if the rain is trying to pretend not to be here. Soon, a few more drops will wet the ground. The frequency will increase and soon, the pavements will be covered with tiny black dots - the rainmarks. The drizzle does not affect the pedestrians in any significant way (except, maybe, people whose hair is sensitive to humidity, and who, for that reason, might experience their locks curling in an unusual way). As far as the tradition goes, however, even the slightest rain is a valid reason for everyone to open up their umbrellas.

3) This point derives from personal experience and is rather universal. People, who suffer most during rains are those who wear glasses.

Narmin is a literature student from Baku, Azerbaijan, for whom moving to the Czech Republic has become a great source for inspiration.