Monday, March 8, 2010

λασποβροχή or Yes we had a Mud Rain last night...

So there's a geographic phenomenon that we have here in Corfu usually between April and July, but it came early this year...

Mud Rain: Rain containing particles of sand or dust. These particles may originate in very distant regions. Source: European Union.

This has been documented since ancient times.  

African Sahara dust storms whip up clouds of sand and they go to high altitudes.  Then when the clouds mix up and make friends with the other clouds (particularly the wet ones) the wind moves it all over the Mediterranean, and splat- we get mud rain. (OK. I didn't major in Geography in school.) 

Every year we experience it and every year we are totally surprised at how much mud actually comes down! 

Ironically, we've always felt that rain was something that rinsed mud OFF the car... this rain really took a perfectly clean car and made a mess of it!

As it came early this year I won't worry about washing the windows quite yet. There's still another couple of months of rain to speculate over.



  1. We have exactly the same thing here Jes. I first experienced it in Selcuk and it has happened here as well. It leaves everything coated in orange mud. Takes ages to clean up.

    It seems to occur along the south coast from west to east as far as Side, where my friends live who also get the same thing.

  2. Just realized that happened here too, still is. While using the wipers as I'm driving...they're just wiping muddy rain around.

  3. I imagine mud rain would be an ordeal to put up with, the dust is bad enough for me to deal with, one does think of rain as refreshing and cleansing in nature!

  4. How interesting! In Ghana we suffered through the Harmattan every year (December, January), the dust that flies SOUTH from the Sahara. You can dust the furniture three times a day. The air is often yellowish and so thick with the sand particles, you can't the sun, or just barely as a palish ball in the sky. It's like an English fog, only it's sand.

    Hadn't thought that the sand-dust from the Sahara traveled north to give you mud rain!

    So I learned something today. Phew, it's already almost 2 in the afternoon.

    Oh, and thank you so much for the award!

  5. Dear Ayak,

    I remember! When it dried it was like dried clay and almost impossible to brush out! We used to have to scrub the car if we didn't rinse it off when it was still wet!

    Dear Cheryl,

    I KNOW! Instead of anti-freeze our biggest winter expense here is the windshield washer fluid that we seem to go through tons of!!

    Dear Wanda,

    Welcome! and yes, it's very disconcerting as if you are wearing a standard tan/cream colored raincoat- and the sky opens up on you when you're out and about... the coat is filthy when you come home!!! (Your blog is so beautiful- such lovely photographs!)

    Dear Miss Footloose,

    What goes up... eh? That Sahara sand just flies everywhere. (I'd heard about the dust storms in Africa) It must be hard to breath when you go outside in that fog of dust.

    re: the award- your life is fascinating and you write so well, it's a joy to read your blog.

    Sometimes when life is particularly chaotic for me I read your blog and suddenly my life is all calm and normal again...

    Dear Lee,

    Of course! Instead of jumping into a mud puddle, they just get to stand there and get covered with mud!



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