Summer rain on hot tarmac

After a long hot day in summer, when the sun is shining relentlessly on people with skin way too fair, after a long hot day in the middle of summer, with crispy dry soil, dusty shoulders along the streets, withered flowers and yellow grass, after a long hot day that bakes in silence you hear a thunderstorm rumbling. The air is heavy as lead, you see a black sky and sudden lightning that sparkles in the distance.

A gusty wind opens the door for the thunderstorm and lets it in. After the rain has come down, after a long fresh shower of warm water that washes away all the dust from the cars, houses, people, dogs and public art, there is suddenly a unique smell in the air – the smell of summer rain on hot tarmac.

This unique smell is called Petrichor by scientists and it appears only after a long period of heat and drought that is being relieved and washed away by fresh rain. Plants that suffer from drought start producing something like an oil in order to protect their leaves. The rain dissolves the oily substance, allows it to evaporate and turns it into a unique summer perfume that everybody knows.

The Rain Museum has developed and patented this unique smell and in the future our new fragrance »summer rain on hot tarmac« can be ordered from the Museum shop.


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