The smell of rain…

I simply love it when I stumble upon an interesting new word!

10802929900172541573This one came about by accident when having a chat in my local hostelry. The day before I had been sitting at a table in the back, writing in my notebook. There was a sudden change in the atmosphere and I knew it was raining. The smell was unmistakable and a glance out of the window only confirmed what I already knew as the pour began.

A day or so later at the same venue, I was chatting with a good friend about music that she might like and remembered an album by Mortiis, The Smell of Rain, which had been a favourite of mine when it came out a few years ago.

I duly Googled the name but was met by the following revelation from Wikipedia as the first result:

Petrichor (/ˈpɛtrɪkɔːr/) is the earthy scent produced when rain falls on dry soil. The word is constructed from Greek πέτρα petra, meaning “stone”, and ἰχώρ īchōr, the fluid that flows in the veins of the gods in Greek mythology.

I love that something like this actually has a name – and one with such an exotic etymology too.

A Red Admiral on platform 1

With all the nonsense going on at the moment, this was my favourite interaction of the week:

I noticed a butterfly on an electrical box at the train station this morning. As I stepped closer to get a picture, it closed its wings as it fell into my shadow. I had obviously interrupted its attempt to warm itself in the sun. As I stepped back, it again spread its wings.

I’m no lepidopterist  and had to use Google to find out that this was a Red Admiral and quite common to the UK. I can’t recall ever seeing one before though, and was quite pleased to briefly make his acquaintance.