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Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Arctic Winter

When I lived in sub-tropical Africa, it was rare for the temperature to drop below 16˚C (61˚F) even in the depth of Winter, Now that I have relocated I have had to acclimatise to a whole new environment, one where it can go for weeks on end with temperatures straight out of the Arctic Circle. Today is a good example. Those temperatures that you see on this jpeg are all Fahrenheit where, for those who are not familiar with the scale, the freezing point is 32˚F. So the temperatores on the graph below represent -16˚C to -25˚C!

I cannot say that I was not forewarned, for when basking in the African sun I used to follow the New England weather that my daughter was experiencing. On Christmas Eve we had a Winter Storm. The weather forecasting here is excellent. When a winter storm is forecast to start in a certain place at a certain time, the chances are that it will do just that. This one was predicted to start at 11 p.m. and to go on until 4 a.m. on Christmas morning, depositing between 6 and 8 inches of snow, and it did just that. In fact because the forecasting is so reliable, Lizzie and I went to drop off our presents with Julie and Jake on Christmas Eve. Sure enough when we awoke on Christmas morning, there was a good 8 inches on and around the Volvo, and the area did not geet snow ploughed until the late afternoon - so we would not have gotten out on the snow-covered Route 5 anyway.

The Christmas Eve storm
I have to admit that I miss the weather of southern Africa - but then I spent 42 years there, certainly more than enough time to get acclimatised. With a change in climate comes the inevitable change in the wildlife. We have Moose, white-tailed deer, black bears, turkeys galore, skunks, foxes, coyotes, lynx, and a few others. No big five, although in some parts of the country you can find the mountain lion and the grey wolf.