This is the second of three blog posts on idioms that contain words relating to the weather. Previously, we focused on idioms with stormy words. Today, we’re looking at idioms containing a wider range of weather – sun, rain and clouds.
Starting with ‘sun’, the phrase everything under the sun means ‘everything that exists or is possible’. It’s often used with the verb ‘try’ in frustration:
I’ve tried everything under the sun to get rid of that stain, but nothing seems to work.
If you make hay while the sun shines, you make good use of an opportunity while it lasts. (It will not last forever.):
Everyone’s here so I think we should set to work and make hay while the sun shines.
There are more idioms with the word ‘rain’. One that you hear a lot is It never rains but it pours (UK)/ When it rains, it pours (US). This means that bad things always seem to happen at the same time:
Amy lost her job on Monday and Alex broke his arm two days later. It never rains but it pours.
The phrase (come) rain or shine means ‘in whatever weather conditions’. We often use it to comment on someone who always does something, even when the weather is bad, and also for making a promise:
He’s out there at six o’clock in the morning, rain or shine.
I’ll be there, I promise, come rain or shine.
To rain on someone’s parade is to do something that spoils their enjoyment of something good that they’re experiencing:
I wasn’t going to rain on her parade and tell her that the award didn’t mean anything.
If you keep / save money for a rainy day, you save it in case something happens in the future that requires the money:
We’ll spend some of it now on a nice holiday and save the rest for a rainy day.
Clouds feature mainly as things that spoil situations, so someone who has a cloud hanging over them feels unhappy and worried and is unable to enjoy the present:
These days I feel like I have a cloud hanging over me.
A cloud on the horizon is something that threatens to cause problems or unhappiness in the future:
The only cloud on the horizon is that Dan’s job is looking less secure.
If someone leaves a company or organization under a cloud, they leave with their reputation slightly spoilt because of something they have done:
He’d left office under a cloud the previous year after allegations of secret cash payments.
I like to finish on a positive note! We use the saying Every cloud has a silver lining to mean that there is always a good aspect to a bad situation. As often happens with sayings, we sometimes shorten this to just Every cloud…:
I lost my job in August but it meant I was able to spend more time with Millie. Every cloud…
I would love to know if your language has an equivalent saying for this. Please comment below if it does.