Monday, 14 January 2013

Whatever the weather

Good time of the day to all those who are passionate about learning English. How is it going for everyone? I hope your day is as bright and sunny as it can be. And today I would like to talk about the weather. We all know the rhyme about the weather which we learned at school:
Whether the weather is fine,
Or whether the weather is not,
Whether the weather is hot,
Or whether the weather is cold,
We’ll weather the weather,
Whatever the weather,
Whether we like it or not.
The idea of the rhyme is that no matter how changeable the weather is – we will still be happy with it. The weather topic is a rather popular topic of conversation in Britain. There are many explanations of this fact. The first and the simplest explanation is just that it is a safe topic to talk about which does not touch upon personal life of people. Secondly, the weather in the UK is so changeable that people like to talk about it and mention how it was minutes ago and how it is now. There are also explanations about how many different topics used to be considered inappropriate for delicate female ears some long time ago and the weather was one of the few topics which was not risky or inappropriate to discuss. Generally, British people are very polite and respectful, so discussing anything personal has often been frowned upon. When asked “How are you” they never start going about their problems or getting emotional. Therefore, discussions about the weather are considered to be the easiest topic to be sociable and friendly without getting into emotional distress. No matter what reason, the result stays the same, the weather is a popular topic of conversation. So we can’t leave it unnoticed and today let’s learn some vocabulary which will help you sound nice and knowledgeable in this topic J
Learners of English can be confused about what can be discussed about the weather. Usually they have very few words in their active vocabulary to be able to sustain a decent weather talk. Let’s try change the situation by enlarging the weather vocabulary.
Cold weather:
Chilly  = прохладно, зябко
Freezing = холодно (при температуре ниже 0)
Cool = прохладно, но приятно
Brisk= свежо
Frosty = морозно
Blizzard = метель, снежная буря
Snowdrifts = снежные заносы, сугробы.
Thaw = оттепель, таяние
Slush = талый снег, слякоть
To melt = таять
Warm/hot weather:
Muggy = сырой и теплый, душный
Stifling = душный
Scorching = очень жаркий, знойный
Boiling = очень жарко (обычно негативно)
Mild = мягкий, умеренный
Heat wave = период сильной жары
Draught = засуха
Wet weather:
The wet weather scale:
Damp àdrizzle à pour down (verb)/downpour (noun) à torrential rain à flood
Damp = влажный, сырой
Drizzle = мелкий дождь, изморось
Downpour = ливень, Проливной дождь
Shower = ливень
Torrential rain = проливной, ливневый дождь
Flood =половодье
Thunderstorm (to thunder) = гроза
Lightning = молния
Hail (hailstones) = град
Talking about the sky:
Clear (clear sky)/not a cloud in the sky = ясно, на небе ни облачка
Cloudless = безоблачно, ясно
Sunny = солнечно
Overcast = покрытый облаками
Cloudy ´= облачно
Mist and fog:
Haze/hazy = туманный, подернутый дымкой (usually caused by heat)
Mist/misty = туманный, мглистый (often on the sea, or caused by drizzle)
Fog/foggy = туманный (quite thick associated with cold weather)
Smog = смог (mixture of fog and pollution, smoke +fog)
Breeze (gentle breeze) = легкий ветерок
Blustery = ветреный
Windy = ветреный
Gale = сильный ветер, шторм
Hurricane = ураган
Have a look at a common weather talk and notice how the words from above are used there:
The talk in the  last link is more colloquial. 
I hope you were able to add new words to your active vocabulary and from now on the weather talk will be as enjoyable for you as any other topic.
Have fun with English!


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