Henry Poon's Blog

Summer Hailstorm

Day 230

The past two months of weather in Stuttgart saw a majority if days that were partly cloudy without a lot of sunshine and a lot of random rain.  Since the beginning of last week, the temperature in Stuttgart rose from a comfortable 20 degrees Celsius to a phenomenal 30 degrees Celsius over the course of a day.  Also part of this dramatic change was the sudden disappearance of all the clouds.  This weather persisted for a few days and I was beginning to think that summer in Stuttgart finally arrived.

Last Wednesday, I noticed on the weather report that Stuttgart would get more rain today and when I saw that I thought it was kind of strange.  As usual though, the forecast here was generally pretty accurate.  As predicted, it started raining as I got to work.  The rain was so light that it may as well not be considered rain.  Not long after, the weather reverted to the 30 degree sunshine.  That was disappointing.  I wanted more rain.

Later that day, as I was leaving work, the bright summer sky was overrun by a large gathering of storm clouds.  A large rainstorm started pretty much around the same time I decided to leave work. I walked from the research building to the main building, which usually takes about a minute, and during that time, it rained so hard that everywhere that my umbrella didn’t cover was soaking wet, namely my jeans from the knees down.  I could squeeze the pant leg and water would gush out like a wet towel.

Like everyone else, I waited for the bus by the guard booth at the gate under shelter.  Looking out, everyone could see the rain turn into hail.  Hail the size of loonies rained down.  The sound of the hail hitting cars just made a loud and persistent rattling noise.

When the bus came, everyone opened their umbrellas and ran to the bus.  While inside, we could still hear the loud rattling from the impact of the hail and we were all thankful that we didn’t have to be outside anymore.

As the bus passed under an overpass, we could see the drain on the overpass disposing the drainage water onto the side of the road beneath it and because of that, it ended up flooding the road.

About halfway down the mountain, the rain stopped and almost immediately, a rainbow appeared.  After getting off the bus, I started feeling the intense summer heat again.  The wet ground now just reflected the intense summer like a giant mirror.

I don’t think I’ve ever encountered that large of a rainstorm in recent memory and definitely not one where it started hailing in 30 degree weather.  Haven’t been that soaked from rain before either.  It was really like movie rain – it comes out of nowhere all of a sudden and gets everyone soaked, but it stops really quickly.

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