Friday, July 25, 2014

Beautiful Day

Oh, my goodness.  Yesterday was a beautiful day: temperatures in the 70’s, slight breeze, gorgeous blue skies and fluffy white clouds.  I love the color of the blue skies against the green grass and trees.

July 2014 - park near our house
Another reason why the day was so beautiful: It’s July -- traditionally the hottest month of the summer.  But this year’s July has been over the top with pleasant temperatures.  We had temps in the 70’s for several days around the Fourth of July.  While tomorrow is supposed to warm up again, next week’s weather prediction has the temperatures back into the 70’s.  I love it!

The Illinois State Water Survey says: The average temperature so far this month in our town is almost 5 degrees below the historical average of 75.  We may be headed for the third-coolest July on record (dating back to 1889).  Number 1 on the list is 2009 at 70 degrees.  The cool July weather is all because of an unusual position of the upper-air jet stream.

In contrast, two years ago, our town lived through its second-hottest July ever with seven days with temperatures of 100 or greater and 27 days with temperatures of 90 or greater.  Last summer was plenty warm, too.

Wind the clock back 6 months and we were in the midst of a cold, snowy winter.  In mid-January our snow total was nearly 25 inches for the season.  January temperatures weren’t any better: average at 20 degrees which ranks as the 17th-coldest January on record in Illinois. 

March 2013

The News-Gazette reports of the infamous winter of 1977-78 when the average temperature in our town was 20.2 degrees and we were buried in a record 67.2 inches of snow.  The next winter was barely better with an average temperature of 20.4 degrees.

Rank
Winter
Total snow in inches
1
1977-78
67.2
2
1981-82
58.4
3
1961-62
45.9
4
1983-84
44.9
5
1963-64
44.3
6
1959-60
41.6
7
2010-11
41.1
8
1978-79
40.5
9
1950-51
39.9
10
1911-12
37.8

I definitely remember the winter of 1977-78.  I began working at the college library January 1978 and was commuting from GC.  My first week of work the college was closed two days.  I do remember two other days that we were closed due to snow the next month.  The plows chiseled great walls of snow along the highways.

But that was then, and this is now.  We’ll keep talking about the weather and remembering “back when,” and we’ll set new records and compare year to year.  And I’ll be happy when the skies are a gorgeous blue with fluffy white clouds and the temperatures are mild.

1964

A Million and One Times

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