28 September 2010

Rainy days

Charleston, S.C.

Dang kids, it's raining again. Who has a really big truck and wants to drive me to work? I expect I'll be dodging flooded streets again tomorrow. Time to check the tide chart.

Rain doesn't bother me. I enjoy a good downpour as long as I don't have to drive in it. I grew up just down the road from the rainiest place in the world - Cherrapunji. We used to run outside like wild maniacs the day the monsoons began. We'd slip and slide in the mud, climb in the fifty five gallon drums under the rain spout and undo our braids. No baths tonight, mum!

I walked three miles to school then, rain or shine. We would look up the hill at what was normally a path, to see what looked like a rushing waterfall, take off our shoes and wade right through it.
The city of Cherrapunji is 1,290 meters above sea level and much of the torrential rains run off the mountains into the valley below, which receives an annual rainfall of 1,270 centimeters. Once it rained 2,290 centimeters in one season!

For those of us not used to centimeters here is the conversion: 2290 cm = 901.6 inches of rain in one season. Yup!


  1. What a lovely photograph!

  2. What you said about walking to school in the rain reminded me of a time while at Fort Bliss, Texas. Was manning a position at the top of a hill during the time of year the locals call "Monsoon Season." Flash flood came through the dried up stream bed at the bottom and it was a wild show.

  3. My husband has similar stories about rainy season in Korea - where it rains so hard all at once people going to work roll up their suit pants and wear flip flops because there's no dry place to walk, and fifteen minutes after the rain stops the sun comes out and the clay earth soaks up every last drop and is dust dry again before people's clothes have quit dripping.

  4. Namrata7:13 AM

    Last night I was arranging photos of a trip to Cherra (or Sohra as the Khasi of that area say)3 years ago.Unlike the crowded univ.trip in 1982 for a picnic,this one gave more space & time for exploring not only nature but also local history.Enjoyed the refreshing view of the numerous viewpoints & waterfalls, the plains of Bangladesh from the point near the Khoh Ramhah (local name of a high, tapering rock),the monolithic stones,looked around the tribal culture musuem of the R.K.Mission & donated to its charity fund, strolled around the Mission Compound set up by the Welsh Presbyterian Pioneers,glanced at the hill where Dr.Griffiths children were buried,read the names of the Syiems etched in their memorial stones,stood in awe before the memorial of David Scott;the wily British Agent who not only outwitted Syiem U Tirot Singh of Nongkhlaw but the other N-E Chiefs too.It was a worthwhile trip taking in the best of nature,culture & history!And the weather deities were cheerful;there was no fog or rain!

  5. Namarata - your comment makes me itch to get over there with my camera! I must make some serious plans. I am not sure if you knew but my sister Shirley will be in Shillong next month. She is playing at a folk festival at the library. Are you familiar with it?

  6. Thanks Pam! Tried to keep the camera dry.

    Beach Bum, Marcheline - that is exactly what I am talking about. Of course rain is more pleasant when it isn't cold.

  7. Namrata3:53 AM

    Yes,I knew about Shirley's trip to Shillong from a link of your post on March 13th.I would have loved to hear her sing and meet her, but most probably I won't be able to do so.By Oct' 23rd,I have to repack from my hometown in Assam to return to Tripura where I work now.If there are changes in travel itinerary,then maybe. Sep'30th 2010 IST 13.20 hours


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