Photo/IllutrationPedestrians walk with umbrellas in Tokyo’s Yaesu district Aug. 16. (Shogo Koshida)

  • Photo/Illustraion

For Tokyoites, this August has been a wash-out. The capital has endured 17 consecutive days of rain--the longest stretch of wet weather for August in 40 years, and the second-longest on record.

And there's no end in sight with the rain expected to fall for another miserable week.

Forget the beach and barbecues for a few more days.

The lack of sunlight has caused vegetable prices to soar.

On the flip side, for office workers shuffling to their workplaces, it hasn't been so sweltering hot in the Japanese capital.

Average daily hours of sunlight in central Tokyo this August have been about two hours, while the average temperature from Aug. 10 to Aug. 15 was below 25 degrees.

In 1977, the wet stretch lasted 22 days from Aug. 6 to Aug. 27. If rain does fall each day for the next week, then 2017 will set a new record of 23 days.

On the veggie front, the constant rain means the shipment volume of cucumbers from Aug. 4 to Aug. 10 was 12 percent lower compared with the same period the previous year, according to the Tokyo Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market.

The average wholesale price of cucumbers grown in Fukushima Prefecture, a major producer, shot up 46 percent to 259 yen ($2.30) per kilogram. The average wholesale price of eggplants grown in Tochigi Prefecture surged 33 percent. The shipment volume of tomatoes also dropped 28 percent.

The gloom has also meant doom for beaches and swimming pools with turnout plummeting.

The number of visitors to three major water spots in Kamakura, in Kanagawa Prefecture next to Tokyo, plummeted about 40 percent from the same period of 2016, according to the city government.

On popular Yuigahama beach, “umi-no-ie” temporary eating and showering facilities, one of Japan’s famous summer features, saw income decline 30 percent on average.

“This is the coldest summer in the last decade,” said the 56-year-old head of the local association.

“Visitors to Yuigahama beach are mainly young company employees. So if we miss the season of Bon holidays (the period to pray for the spirits of ancestors) in mid-August, we will never be able to recoup losses.”