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Yes, California is very hot (112 F., approx. 45 C.)
09/06/2020, 22:37:25

    The Elf writes:

    However, the humidity is only around 12%, so even though it's uncomfortable, it's really a lot more bearable than 90 degrees F., with 90%+ humidity, like most of the country east of the Mississippi River. So we're not that bad off.




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And I hear that today was another scorcher.
09/07/2020, 20:58:51

    Bones writes:





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A bit of irony on Tuesday
09/10/2020, 12:42:54

    The Elf writes:

    Monday it was 110. Tuesday there was so much smoke in the sky that it shaded the sun: it was only 85, and 60 at night.
    (The year Krakatoa erupted was the "Year Without a Summer," when the northern hemisphere had a killing frost every month.) I wonder if that's why it snowed in Colorado the other day?




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This won't be anything out of the ordinary to you, but . . .
09/11/2020, 09:47:26

    Peter2 writes:

    . . . some years ago (early 1990's I think) we spent Christmas in Ormond Beach, Florida. I found it "novel" (and that's quite some understatement) to be able to spend Christmas Day sunbathing, in the knowledge that 250 miles inland, there was 6" of snow on the ground.




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Hmmm. Ossie, what's your take on this?
09/11/2020, 11:56:59

    The Elf writes:





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Christmas and fires in Australia
09/18/2020, 21:03:43

    Ossie writes:

    Christmas is hot. It's summer. It's just always been normal. Like Peter2, my biggest novelty was the only holiday period I spent somewhere completely different, where snow on New Years Eve in Edinburgh was about the best thing that had ever happened.


    In terms of fires, we obviously had that terrible period last December. I was in New Zealand over Christmas & some of the snow on the mountains was pinkish-yellow, due to all the ash that had drifted across the ocean. Then about 2 weeks later is actually hit South America, by all accounts. We have bushfires pretty frequently so December was not particularly exceptional in that sense, although the heat was such that many separate fires pretty much combined into one huge front.

    But the difference in Australia is that we are largely empty. Fires need something to burn, and trees (largely) only grow near the coast out here (say within a couple of hundred kms). But that just happens to also be where all the people are: we have roughly 23 million people squeezed - to the surprise of many people, with some of the highest density in the world - largely into a narrow habitable band along the coasts. The interior is largely empty, so the extreme temperatures are pretty much unrecorded, there's nothing to burn in the first place, and nothing to destroy if it did.

    Somewhere like the US is completely different because it's full. California alone has almost twice as many people as the entire of Australia. And despite the heat, trees still grow, and many more people live near them, so wildfires are a much bigger threat to life and property. Our fires destroy large areas of forest, probably more than California even now, but in relatively uninhabited areas. It's still a tragedy, of course, but the scale of life and property loss is in the low hundreds - smaller size fires are far bigger human disasters in California.





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Hogmanay on the Royal Mile
09/19/2020, 17:23:41

    Peter2 writes:

    Hogmanay on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh is a wonderful experience, isn't it? Both my sons went to university in Edinburgh. One year my niece (who is Canadian) came over and spent Christmas with us in Chester and then went up to Edinburgh with them to see the New Year in. She was the envy of her school when she told them of it.

    And one of my nephews lives just north of Adelaide, and as you say Christmas over there in quite something else.





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Hogmanay was fantastic
09/20/2020, 07:58:34

    Ossie writes:

    Legitimately one of my favourite days of that trip. From celebrating from midday as that was NYE time in Australia, to snow falling in the middle of the day, to the night on the Royal Mile - all great




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However, I'm mightily relieved that you don't live in "fire country"
09/08/2020, 06:43:16

    Peter2 writes:

    The problem over here has been water it's been very wet in places. We're fortunate, we live in a rain shadow area and in any case our house is near the top of the hill, but there's a friend of mine further inland whose house was flooded. There were plenty of places for the water to go, but building work below them had restricted the drainage. What happened was (1) violent cloudburst, (2) 6" water through the ground floor of the house, and (3) water gone. The whole thing was over in about 90 minutes, but the damage had been done. He's now arguing with the insurance people.




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