Monday, March 19, 2012
Unseasonably early cherry blossoms brighten the neighborhood (and help clog the sinuses of the residents). Click to embiggen.
Today is the last day of Winter in the northern hemisphere: The vernal equinox arrives sometime tomorrow morning at oh-dark-thirty.
Looking around, it’s hard to imagine we even have had a winter this year. Sure, we’ve had a few actual days of cold, but this year they’ve been exceptionally thin on the ground. And lately it’s been ridiculous. Temperatures hereabouts have been in the eighties for the past several days, the longest such March streak in recorded history. Yesterday, the mercury hit 84°F, breaking a record of thirty years standing. The trees are in full bloom about three or four weeks ahead of their normal schedule. Even the azaleas have begun to blossom near our side door.
The people at Augusta National must be having hissy-fits. At the rate things are going, the flowers on the azaleas and dogwoods there will be distant memories by the time the Masters rolls around on April 5. I wouldn’t put it past them to blanket the entire course with refrigerated nitrogen just to slow things down.
Today’s pollen count - 8,164 particles per cubic meter of air - didn’t just break the old record set back in 1999, it shattered it. Allergy sufferers are miserable, and few more than The Missus, who usually gets to enjoy a gap of a few weeks between the end of her standard-time-driven seasonal affective disorder and the onset of sneezy season. Feh.
If this is March, I hate to imagine what July and August are gonna be like...