Cats, dogs, buckets and strings

As we’ve been having rain – der Regen – here in Hamburg the last few days, I thought I’d learn more about expressions describing or involving “rain.” First, here are a few that allow you to talk about rainy weather.

Es regnet Bindfäden – “It’s raining cats and dogs” – literally “It’s raining strings”
Es gießt Strippen – “It’s pouring down” – literally “It’s pouring strings”
Es gießt wie aus Kübeln – “It’s pouring like buckets” (this seems to work literally and figuratively)
Es regnet in Strömen – “It’s bucketing down” – literally “It’s raining in streams”
Es schüttet ordentlich – “It’s chucking it down” – literally something like “It’s pouring neatly”
Es nieselt – “It’s drizzling”
der Regentropfen – “raindrops”
der Guss – “downpour”
der Platzregen – “downpour”
der Wolkenbruch – “downpour served up some nice idioms that involve rain:

jemanden im Regen stehen lassen – “to leave someone in the lurch” – literally “to leave someone standing in the rain”

vom Regen in die Traufe kommen – “out of the frying pan and into the fire” or “to go from bad to worse” – literally something like “to come from [standing in] the rain to [being under] the eaves” which was described as moving from having individual drops falling on you to having a sheet or steam of falling water hitting you by

ein warmer Regen – “a windfall” – literally “a warm rain,” it is interesting how both expressions refer to the weather

Himmel, Arsch und Wolkenbruch/Zwirn!
– “For crying out loud!’ – literally “Heaven, ass and cloudburst/[strong] thread”

Finally, in English we say “Every cloud has a silver lining,” which is surely worth remembering when days of rain are getting to you!

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2 thoughts on “Cats, dogs, buckets and strings

  1. kwhirsh says:

    Just learned the word tagelang – “for days” – and this sentence that I hope will soon become true: Nachdem es tagelang geregnet hatte, kam endlich mal wieder die Sonne heraus!

  2. kwhirsh says:

    It has stopped raining for the moment, however, I discovered this page of tips for when it starts up again:

    At the end of the piece, there is this sentence with a bit of Plattdeutsch for your delectation: Denn wie heißt es in Hamburg so schön: ” Schietwedder givt dat hier nich.”

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