rain

Rainy Day LA

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After such a long dry spell, rain is absolutely luxurious.

Soak it up, Los Angeles!

Weather or not…

When I was a kid in Connecticut, our next-door neighbors moved away. The people who bought their house were from Los Angeles, and on the day they moved in, the skies opened. Torrential rain.

My mother went over to welcome our new neighbors, who asked her, “When does the rainy season end?”

Now, that is a perfectly reasonable question in California, which really does have a rainy season: typically from November through February. It doesn’t guarantee rain during the winter months, but it does pretty much mean that you can plan your garden party from March through October without having to worry about an alternate ‘rain date’.

But to my mother, whose weather experience was limited to the New York metropolitan area, there was no such thing as a ‘rainy season’. Precipitation was just as likely on July 18th as it was on January 27th – the only variable was rain or snow. I remember Mom coming home and reporting that the new people were “a little strange”. (And they were a little strange, but it wasn’t weather-related.)

Turns out, it wasn’t such a bad question after all. That rainy move-in day for the neighbors was the start of a record-breaking streak of rainy days in the New York area, something on the order of 20 days in a row with rainfall. I may not be remembering the numbers accurately. But a LOT of rain fell for MANY MANY consecutive days. We learned later from the neighbors that they thought my mother was “a little strange” for having lied to them about Connecticut’s summer rainy season.

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The local LA media is sounding the drumbeat today: EPIC RAINFALL EVENT ON THE WAY!! They are evacuating people from hillsides in recently burned areas. The rain may start tonight and continue, in waves, right up until the EPIC OSCARS EVENT!! on Sunday afternoon. Total rainfall in Los Angeles could be anywhere from 1-to-4 inches. You get used to the hyperbole in Southern California – the least challenging place in the country to be a meteorologist. “Sunshine today, sunshine tomorrow, sunshine continuing throughout the Zzzzzzz…” Imagine the excitement when they get to dust off the rainy day graphics. Click here to download your DIY Ark Instructions.

We need the rain. I’ve learned to be skeptical… but I hope we get it. Because when a little rain hits the dry pavement in LA, a lot of snow piles up in the Sierra. And that’s where most of our water comes from for the next year. Rain is good. As long as it doesn’t wreak havoc with hairdos and red carpet star-gazing at the Academy Awards!

Photo credit: “LA Rain” by Nic Adler (click here for Flickr link)

[027] WINTER – FINALLY!

If you don’t live in Southern California, you’ll never understand the agony… If you live in a place where “wind chill” is a thing, you should just skip this post because you might find it very upsetting.

A few weeks ago, I lamented the fact that I Bought A Scarf in December – but it had been too warm to wear it.

To give this whinge a little meteorological heft, I refer you to the following charts showing the Actual Temps in Los Angeles for the months of December 2013 and January 2014. I’ll meet you on the other side.

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In December, there were 11 days in the 70s; 8 days in the 80s.

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In January, there were 16 days in the 70s, 12 days in the 80s, and 1 day it hit 90. Taken together, 48 of the 62 days in Dec/Jan were pink bloomsin the 70s or 80s. Do you know what that means? Well, if you live in the Plant Kingdom, that means… SPRING! The calendar may have said January, but this is what some trees in my neighborhood were doing the other day:

Today is Groundhog Day, and Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow to forecast six more weeks of winter in places that actually have winter. But I’m thinking that maybe good ol’ Phil has sent a little sumpin-sumpin my way, too. This is the fourth day in a row with temps in the 60s. The low 60s, even. Plus – super double bonus! – yesterday it drizzled, and today we even had a rain worthy of the windshield wipers!!

I won’t thank any gods, because they must be exhausted from listening to the prayers of fans of sport (as Mitt would say). (Theological Sidebar: Does God Hate The Broncos Because Colorado Legalized Pot? -Or- Does God Love The Seahawks Because Washington State Legalized Pot?)

Cool weather and a bit of rain is a real tonic for those of us in sun-drenched, drought-stricken, early-bloomin’ Los Angeles. Here’s the forecast for the coming week:

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More rain tomorrow! Highs struggling to hit 60 until next weekend! And overnight lows – don’t toy with me! – dipping into the UPPER 30s by Friday!?

I’m glad I have that new scarf to protect me from these arctic blasts. I am even wearing socks right now. Heavy socks. Could this be – are we trapped in a polar vortex?!! I mean, if the Washington Monument can be knocked down (OK, cracked) by an earthquake, then why can’t LA have a polar vortex? It seems only fair.

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Wintry weather (à la californien) makes me happy.
Day 027 #100happydays