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Rain

Viet Nam is a country of rain. The hydro-meteorological gauge varies between 80 and 100 degrees. There are two distinct seasons in the year - the dry and cold season and the rainy and hot season, which correspond to the monsoon periods of the Northeast and the Southeast. The Northeast monsoon brings cold and rain while the Southeast monsoon brings warmth and thun-dershowers, often typhoons. The Cloudy Pass (Deo Hai Van) which sepa-rates Thua Thien (Hue) from Quang Nam constitutes an important climatic barrier: the Northeast monsoon is stopped there by the high ranges of moun-tains so that the provinces south of the pass have the tropical climate of the south while the north is subject to the subtropical climate.

 
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Rain is an important factor in the life of a rice-growing people like the Vietnamese. No surprise then that the Vietnamese folklore has been haunted by rain and the phenomena that accompany it: clouds, lightning and thunder.
Fust, popular beliefs dating from time immemorial are studied with rain- related stories. It is even believed that the dragon, the fabulous animal which watered rice fields with its waterspouts, came from its prototype, the croco-dile or the crested serpent (thuong luong) in the swamps of Southeast Asia of which Viet Nam is a part. Together with the dragon, the very old cult of fertility also honours the goddesses of Rain, Cloud, Lighting and Thunder which were to be annexed by the Buddhist Olympia. The introduction of Confucianism has undoubtedly this cult by solemn ceremonies including the invocation of rain (le cau dao) in dry years.
 
Numerous proverbs and popular songs refer to rain. The people have theừ own meteorological concerning rain.
 
Mua chang qua ngo, gio chang qua mui.
 
(The rain does not last beyond midday, there will always be a lull at 3 o’clock in the afternoon);
 
Mua thang ba, hoa dat 
Mua thang bay be gay canh tram 
Mua thang tam, mau rang 
Mua thang tu, hu dat 
Mua dam lau cung lut
 
(Rains in the third lunar month make the soil blossom with bountiful crops
Rains in the seventh lunar month accompanied with violent winds break branches of canariun
The rains of the eighth lunar month are as beneficial to the rice fields ỈỈ the blood of the dragon
Rains in the fourth lunar month spoils the summer crop
Prolonged rains, even if they are not very heavy showers, finally cause inundation).
 
People distinguish two kinds of special rain: mua ruoi (the nereid rain) and ngau rain. The former is characterised by showers that fall toward the ninth and 10th lunar months and announce the season of nereids, the edible, white worm. The Itgdu rain is characterised by waves of long lasting showers which fall during the seventh lunar month. According to a Chinese legend, Chuc Nu, a heavenly princess, fell in love with cowherd Nguu Lang. Angered, the gods separated them but allowed them to meet once each year, in the seventh month, on a bridge of the Silver River (Milky Way) formed by crows aligned side by side. The tears which they shed then fell down in the form of rain. Vo chong Ngau (the Ngau couple) designates a married couple who constantly live far from each other.
 
There is also a kind of rain called Mua bong may (rain caused by the shade of a cloud) - the fine, passing autumn rain. Hence the phrase khoc nhu mua bong may, weep very little like a mua bong may.
 
Numerous proverbs refer to rain to speak of human behaviour and moods. Thus, “mua luc nao mat mat luc day” (whenever the rain falls it always refreshes the face, or, for a poor person all donation is welcome); “mua thi mua cho khap” (if it rains let water fall everywhere, or, favours should be dispensed to everybody). In the literary language, may mua (cloud and rain) may mean copulation or a fit of temper.
 
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Update : 30-03-2018

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