Monday, September 2, 2013

The Sun Shower and the Armenians

Saturday, at a conference on Armenian Folklore and Mythology held at the National Association of Studies and Research in Belmont, Massachusetts, Prof. Bert Vaux of Cambridge University discussed the geography of folkloric motifs, specifically "The Sun Shower -- in Armenia and Beyond".  Although Marash Girl will not attempt to recap the lecture, she will use it as a jumping off point . . .

Now if any of you have ever experienced a sun shower, it is a moment to be cherished --  to stand in the rain and have the sun shining down on you at one and the same time.  And Marash Girl does remember such a moment -- standing in her back yard on Lowell Avenue in Newtonville, many years ago, on her right hand the rain did fall while on her left the sun shone.  Imagine that -- it was actually raining on half of her and her back yard, and shining on the other half of her and her back yard.

Discussing this with Marash Boy after hearing the presentation "The Sun Shower -- in Armenia and Beyond", Marash Boy commented that he had never heard the term, "sun shower". Whenever the sun was shining through the rain, his mother would tell him, "Look up and you'll see a rainbow!"  Marash Girl had never heard that (nor had she heard, as Professor Vaux brought to the fore, that the sun shower in Armenia signals the fact that a wolf is giving birth in the mountains).  But that very next day, Sunday -- yesterday, in fact -- Marash Girl went out for her early morning walk and as she crossed the bridge over the Massachusetts Turnpike in Newton Corner (granted, not Armenia, nor a very rural or romantic setting), gentle drops of rain blessed her as the sun, rising in the east, shone on her -- she was amazed -- here after all these years, she was experiencing a sun shower, and not even 24 hours after Professor Vaux had been discussing the phenomenon.  Remembering Marash Boy's words, she looked up, and sure enough, there in the western sky was the rainbow Marash Boy had promised.

Whether or not the wolf was giving birth in the mountains, she cannot say.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! I’d forgotten that Mama taught me to look for a rainbow! After every rainstorm, if the sun shines, I look for a rainbow in the sky as I did recently.

    Here in Springfield on Chestnut Street, looking out my third-floor window after a tremendous thunderstorm, I thought there would be a rainbow . . . it slowly appeared before me, a wide, low arch from my left, over the flag of the Springfield Armory, to my right touching the Museum Park building. As I gazed at all the colors of the rainbow, a second full rainbow appeared above the first with all its colors. From below I heard a voice exclaim, “Look, there is a second one!”

    As I write this, I hear thunder. I wonder if there will be another rainbow today.