#937 The smell of rain on a hot sidewalk

Hot fumes coming at'cha

There’s just something about the smell of rain on a hot sidewalk. It’s sort of like the rain cleans the air — completely hammering all the dirt and grime particles down to the ground and releasing some hot, baked-in chemicals from the pavement. It smells best if it hasn’t rained in a while and the sidewalk is scalding hot — then it sort of sizzles and steams up into a big, hot, intoxicating whiff.


Photo from: here

61 thoughts on “#937 The smell of rain on a hot sidewalk

  1. I’m currently teaching English in Japan, and here they hate that smell. I can’t believe it when someone here tells me that. There is nothing that says summer more than the smell of rain on the sidewalk and pavement. AWESOME!

    Jerame Clough
    -Next Gen Politics

  2. I adore this smell more than I can say. When I start to smell it, even if I’m at work I immediately run to the nearest window to soak it in.

  3. *It’s all about the wet cement smell on the basketball court at a elementary school*
    I have found that you can attempt to recreate this smell w/DEMETER (single note fragrance)- by doing one squirt Dirt and one squirt Rain. . . but that chemical soothing smolting smell is missing.

  4. I am obsessed with this smell every since I quit smoking. It is so much more powerful than before. Like Mike said, you can fake the smell by spaying the hose on the sidewalk. In New York, businesses do this every day and I find myself walking on the side of the street where they spray!

  5. ahhhh, the smell of a childhood summer day…

    @ mike: i used to spray the sidewalk, too… just to smell the smell

    now i live in the desert. it doesn’t rain too often, but when it does… on a hot 110 F summer afternoon… AWESOME!

    (along with the additional smell of the creosote bush… that’s a whole other page of awesome!)

  6. I agree that it’s intoxicating. I also think it is suffocating, because all oxygen seems to be soaken out of the air. The first 30 secs orso after this anamoly strikes, I allways have trouble breathing… I thus think this phenomena isn’t what is seems to be, but in fact, it’s an alien thing and they’re harvesting oxygen locally when it happens. They don’t do it to all of earth’s air at te same time, because they are too small in numbers yet. But they won’t be for long, as some of them trie to convince us that it’s even our on fold that it’s raining more and more since the last decades. One already even got a nobel-prize for this. So, be aware every time rain falls on hot pavement. Because now you know They are near…

  7. The phenomenon is so notable and so familiar, it should have its own name. Recently I walked about a mile, all the while that smell was strong in the air. I tried to analyze it. Is it dust? Is it some dried out bacteria activated by the rain? No matter what it is, it takes me back to childhood when I walked to school, occasionally in the rain.

  8. If this list is in order of “most awesome” as #1, then this certainly deserves a place closer to the top.

    Totally awesome.

  9. some people like the smell of gasoline, I prefer bacon, popcorn, freshly mowed grass, walking outside of a bakery just as the bread is coming out of the ovens…clean high thread count cotton sheets as they come out of the dryer…

  10. This is definately one of my favourite smells of all time. In the summer, even the street cleaner driving by can make the same smell, so there I am walking behind it as the water evaporates. My cousin liked the smell so much that sometimes he’d just dump a bucket of water on the sidewalk when there was no rain to be found.

  11. I am certainly with you on this, as I do love rain at any time of the year, even now in summer. I just find it really refreshing. Nature at its best.:D

  12. In South Carolina Summer heat, this smells great after an afternoon rain while the steam rises *inhales* lovely…

  13. I live in a rural area where there are still clotheslines in the back yard. Sheets dried on the line, warmed by the sun…I wish they could bottle that scent. It’s the best cure for insomnia in the world!

  14. I love the picture! I’d like to ask is it possible if I can use it on my blog! I have poem that is called rain and it will be really great if you let me attach your picture to my poem! Thanks!

  15. I don’t agree with most guys here; since I started reading this post I couldn’t stop until I finished, while it wasn’t just what I had been looking for, was indeed a nice read though. I will instantly get your feed to maintain informed of any updates.

  16. I used to play a lot of street-hockey back home in London, on a blistering hot summer’s day when the game was really picking up sometimes a rain shower would come and stop us in our tracks… somehow while everybody stood grumbling, i couldn’t help but smile. Glad to have found a whole community who would have certainly doe the same thing. Let’s organize a hockey game some time and pray for rain..

  17. Another good one is the smell of rain on a the prairie ground. Out in New Mexico it only rains ever so often. The ground gets really dry and dusty, and when the rain hits it, it makes this wonderful smell.

  18. I would say that the only thing better than the smell of rain on a hot sidewalk is when it rains on a lazy afternoon and you can cuddle up inside and just watch or listen to the rain come down. Since it rains a pretty good portion of the time in the spring where I go to school, it’s Awesome when you have nothing better to do than hang out and enjoy it. — Not so awesome to have to walk to class in it, but then it’s just that much better when you can stay in, or even better when the rain stops just before you have to walk to class and you get to enjoy the fresh rain smell on your way!

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