Archives for posts with tag: weather

A conversation this evening with my daughter as we drove through yet another rain storm.

“Dad? What’s a hundred year flood?”

“It’s a flooding event that is meant to take place every 100 years, but nowadays we experience it about every 10 years.”

“Why is that?”

“Because the climate is changing. The world is warming up. It’s making our climate wetter and windier. And this is only the start. Some day soon, all this place may well be under water.”

“Why is the climate changing?”

“Because we’ve been busy over the past 100 years pumping more and more fossilized carbon into the atmosphere. Stuff that’s been in the ground for millions of years, it’s all being burned off in an instant. We’ve known for decades that this is a bad thing, but instead of trying to deal with it, to invent and perfect technologies that would have maintained our standards of living while reducing the carbon levels, a powerful group of influential idiots decided that the best course of action was to pretend it wasn’t happening at all. Their obstinate refusal to listen to the scientists will result in deaths and dispossession on an unimaginable scale.”

“What are we going to do about it?”

“More like what are you going to do about it. Our generation, and the ones that came before us have screwed everything up. We have left behind a mess that you, your children and their children will be faced with cleaning up. When you are my age, schoolchildren will be amazed at how we drove around in filthy fume creating vehicles, and how we were so careless with our environment. Mark my words: we’ll be cursed, and deservedly so.”

“Is it hopeless?”

“I don’t think so. You’ll have your work cut out for you for sure, but you are going to be better people than we ever were. You won’t be plagued by these insane false arguments that we constantly had to deal with. Instead of talking about change, you’ll make it happen. That gives me a lot of hope.”

I’m not sure if there is a bigger contrast between these photos from East Cork and Shanghai, but both have their charms.

Just click on any of these photos to enlarge.

Here is the scene that met me a few days ago as I was preparing to go to work. I jumped out of bed and ran down the road to take a few snaps before the ever changing weather stole the view from me.

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Another photo, this time by Garryvoe beach. the island in the distance as a mother coaxed her child to keep pace with the rest of the family.

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And this one I took yesterday, with my boys.

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Three different days, three┬ácompletely different weather conditions. That’s Ireland for you.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been experimenting with a different type of time-lapse shot: one where I take just one or two photos a day, and then bring all them together into a short movie.

The subject was an oilseed rape field close by the house. I noticed it was coming into bloom, so I decided to follow its progress as the entire field turned bright yellow over a two week period.

Rapeseed Field and Rainbow

The resulting video captures the changing weather of our country. Every day brings something new, as rain gives way to scattered clouds, with the occasional sunny day thrown in every so often. Another reminder of the beauty of our countryside.

 

via NASA Earth Observatory

One of the things about living in Ireland is that we rarely get that much snow. In most areas it usually arrives in the depths of winter – January or February maybe – stays for about a day and then disappears again. Apart from one day last year, my kids have never woken up to snow outside their home. It’s curious because Ireland has a very high latitude on this planet. We share the same distance from the equator as Moscow, Edmonton, Gander and other bitterly cold and ice-bound places on the planet. The reason, of course, is the North Atlantic Drift: a current of warm oceanic water originating off the coast of Florida. The warm waters off our coast and prevailing northwesterly winds normally keep temperatures well above zero for most of the year.

Not so this year. A high pressure area over the North Atlantic has served us with frosty Arctic air for the best part of two weeks now. Snow, almost unheard of in November, covered most of the island with the east of the country getting a particularly thorough battering. My mother in Kilkenny is housebound and my sister in Wales was unable to come home for a wedding this weekend because of near blizzard conditions in Waterford.

Much to the disappointment of my children, Cork was spared from the snow. Snow was threatened yesterday morning but instead we got drenched by icy rain. It froze instantly to the roads, briefly turning the whole city into a massive skating rink.

NASA’s Aqua satellite took this wonderful photo of Ireland on Thursday. You can clearly see the snow clouds pasting the east coast of Ireland before venturing out into the Celtic Sea. The mid-West of Ireland, from Clare to Cork, remained relatively unscathed, while seven-foot deep snow was reported in the Wicklow mountains.

A winter to remember, for sure.

And now, the weather forecast…

Irish Summer

Don’t you just love it?

That’s how I feel after I have had a long walk in the mountains! I managed to get in a 10 km walk in the Knockmealdowns in Co. Waterford today in the pouring, freezing rain, and I feel simply terrific after it all. So what if I couldn’t see anything with the fog and the rain? So what if I return to work tomorrow? So what if it is still the middle of winter with lots of bad weather ahead of us in the next few days? After days like this I can take on anything.

(Unfortunately no nice photos to show – my camera finally gave up the ghost a few weeks ago after far too many knocks on hard surfaces. I’m getting a new one next week though, so stay tuned).

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