LOCAL VIEW —WAITING FOR WARMTH—Updated

The cold hasn’t yet loosened its grip on us. In fact, despite all the talk of a warm up, it is actually two degrees colder this morning than yesterday. (19 versus 21).  Once again Calgary is milder than the parts of the American southeast, as it is 37 in the dark  before dawn in Calgary, and 29 as the sun rises over the Atlantic in Wilmington North Carolina.

That will change, as the north wind that blew yesterday is swinging around to the south. Below are yesterday evening’s and this morning’s maps. (Click maps, or open them to a new tab, to clarify and enlarge them.) Yesterday’s isobars clearly show a north wind, but today they show the shift to a kinder direction.

29141121B satsfc

20141122 satsfc

The weak storm drifting across Hudson Bay is bringing modified-by-Chinook Pacific air east. It is the so-called “northern branch.”  The weak low in southwest Texas is the “southern branch.”  We get our big storms when the two branches come together and “phase.”  This isn’t happening right now. Instead we need to draw an imaginary warm front north to south between the two features, bringing some light snow, freezing rain and thawing to the Great Lakes. (I’m sure those snow-buried folk don’t need any  extra weight on their roofs.)

20141122 rad_nat_640x480

We just had a glorious sunrise, with the sun flickering crimson over the bottoms of alto cumulus as it peeked over the horizon. But now I have to go utterly waste my morning attending one of those adult-education classes the state requires of Childcare Professionals. The message of this class seems to be that children benefit from spending time outdoors.  Duh.  Or perhaps I should state that more succinctly:

DUH!

Considering our entire Childcare is based around the premise the outdoors is good for children, it is more likely that I should be teaching this class than taking it.  However….sigh…I need the “hours” of classroom time. And sometimes…(assume John Wayne voice)….a man’s just got to do what a man’s got to do.

UPDATE

As usual, the class wasn’t as bad as I feared. Of course, I can think of 1024 better ways to spend a Saturday morning, (and at my age I  don’t have that many left,) however once I resign myself to the situation, I can find it amusing. For one thing, the classroom held 29 women and myself, the lone man. That alone is great fun.

One thing that is good to note is that the idea that the outdoors is good for kids, which was, for some bizarre reason, “radical” only eight years ago, seems to be gathering momentum. (Sometime I’ll have to write about all the hoops the State made us jump through, to run a Childcare on a farm.)

Had lunch with the staff and drove back from Keene, (over on the west side of Southern New Hampshire) and the short, wintry day, (as short as January 20),  seemed pretty much shot. After a quick catnap, the clouds were already stained with the golden roses of sunset. You have to remind yourself the day is not done.

Headed off to a meeting of church elders. I guess I’m an elder now, though the idea still seems absurd. Some part of me is still a teenager who doesn’t trust anyone over thirty.

For geezers we talk about some pretty intense stuff. It is up to us to hand the Faith to a new generation, however New England has gone from being the “Bible Belt” of the USA in the 1800’s, to being an area where Christianity attracts hostility.

About the only thing retained from the 1800’s is New England’s remarkable prudishness. In the old days it was old fashioned prudishness, but now it involves political correctness. In both cases it is safest to keep your mouth shut, if you are not willing to be a parrot. As usual, I failed to keep my mouth shut.

After the meeting it was dark, but you could feel the change in the weather.  The map shows the wind shifting to the west:

20141122B satsfc

Though they do not draw a warm front on the above map, you can feel the air is moister, and it is attempting to snow, though the precipitation is drying up on its way east.

20141122B rad_ne_640x480

It is striking how subjective we mortals are. In a more ordinary November this evening might have been been after a spell of Indian Summer, with mellow air and temperatures touching sixty, in which case people would be walking hunched, hugging themselves against the chill of an evening with temperatures in the 30’s. However, because it was preceded by a record-setting cold spell, people are more at ease, and walk swinging their arms with their jackets un-zippered.

Our assessments tend to be tainted by yesterday’s skies.

Hmm. I sense a sonnet brewing.

          YESTERDAY’S SKIES
How fickle we are, and how very strange
Are our postures. Although weather’s the same
Our stance is dependent on chance and change.
Yesterday’s skies deserve all shame and blame,
For if, with wind west and air forty, but
The day before bright, balmy, calm and kind,
We walk hunched with jackets hugged shut,
Then that should be the rule, and yet I find
If the day before froze brooks and cracked pines
Then west wind and air forty holds great charms,
And inconsistent people with mad minds
Walk with wide-open coats and swinging arms.
The past isn’t dead when smiles and sighs
Are puppets controlled by yesterday’s skies.

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7 thoughts on “LOCAL VIEW —WAITING FOR WARMTH—Updated

  1. I know u glance my way occasionally and here is something that deserves watching … the “mother of all” storm systems has just popped out of the latest forecasts (this is “I will believe it when I see it stuff”) and is especially impressive when u look at Fernie where I have a condo on the ski hill: http://www.theweathernetwork.com/weather/canada/british-columbia/fernie
    Now this is the town forecast and several cms of snow in town usually means 10 plus on the hill …. 10 – 15 in town is a big dump of 30 – 60 on the hill and something like Wednesday’s 40 cm could be stupid big on the mountain. This will be interesting to watch ….. an analogy year would be 1996 when November delivered 4.6 metres of snow and they struggled to open the mountain since the lifts were buried an the snow cats couldn’t climb the hill … hopefully there is a grey hair around that remembers ’96 and gets the cats out early packing some trails. Calgary gets a portion of the winter fun too!
    So far the snowmagedon is nothing too exciting with maybe 25 cm overnight up top but the fun is just getting started.
    The last two seasons have seen about 11 metres total snowfall (36 ft) and so storms like this are not that unusual but this one is forecast to be noticeably more intense than most. We shall see!

    • Thanks for the heads-up. I think you’re right, “I’ll believe it when I see it,” but I’ll be keeping my eye on those snow-cams to see if the lifts get buried. After all, the computer models aren’t ALWAYS wrong. And, even when they are wrong, they are wrong with a reason, and often they see that “reason” before I’m alert.

      I am finding it is helpful to pay attention to Calgary, as you are “upstream” of New Hampshire, and stuff that hits you effects me two to three days later.

      Thanks again for alerting me.

  2. I am enjoying your blog just as much as when you were concentrating on the arctic. Your thoughts on yesterdays sky reminded me of my few years in Saranac Lake as a child, only on a longer timeline. The temperature in November that had us getting out the long johns and the heavy parkas in March had us putting them away and braking out the wind breakers.
    Back to the Arctic, the Danish site seems to be down, you got me hooked on it and now I can’t see what is happening at the top of the world.

    • Thanks for your kind words.

      At first I thought the DMI site must have blocked me for using their maps without permission. However I now see they are unavailable to everyone. I’m not sure what their problem is. Hopefully it will be fixed soon.

      I can get arctic maps from other sources, but I prefer the simplicity of theirs.

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