When we look up at the horizon on a cloudy day, occasionally we expect to see some rain - and possibly even snow drifting down from the blistery winter skies. But one resident of Dorset UK was perplexed when he went outside and it started raining bizarre gelatinous globs of an unidentified substance all over his garden. This is only the latest in a long string of unexplained precipitations around the globe.
We generally think of the sky as simple, predictable, and only occasionally containing mysteries. But increasingly we have noted strange objects raining from the sky without explanation - and more often than not this odd raining of objects seems to happen in the United Kingdom.
Steve Hornsby, aged 61 was out in his garage when suddenly he noticed a burst of hail open up from the sky at just ten minutes past four on Thursday. After the hail had subsided he walked back out and noticed that the sudden burst from the sky had brought with it no ordinary rain, but rather several tiny balls of gel which splattered on the lawn and driveway - spheres that should not have survived their plummet to the ground.
As he walked out onto the lawn and attempted to pick one of the tiny balls of gel up he noticed that they dissipated quickly, melting partially and slipping out from his hands. It was only with great effort that he was able to wrangle a few of them up with a spoon and collect them into an old mason jar. The strangest thing about them was possibly their odd consistency, having an outer shell and a strange liquid interior. Hornsby tested whether they floated in water, and noted that they did not. They also had no particular smell either, which actually rules out many of the chemical theories. He noted that the area they had fallen in was very localized on his property - a rough patch about twenty meters in diameter. But if the gel was so fragile, how did it maintain its consistency after taking a fall from such a tremendous height?
And now speculation abounds as to what these mysterious droplets could be. Everything from invertebrate eggs to chemicals from an aircraft have been proposed. Yet despite the speculation, no clear answer has been found.
It should be noted that this is not the first time a mysterious rain has broken out over the UK in recent history. In December of 2011 apples suddenly started raining from the sky on motorists in Coventry's B4098. The apples, which fell from the sky with no nearby planes or other possible sources, were said to have possibly been picked up by a sudden tornado. The nearest apple orchard, however, was miles away.
What's going on in the skies over the UK? While we can't say the phenomenon of mystery rains is entirely new, it is increasingly perplexing during what was supposed to be ordinary winter weather.
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