Illustration (Image Credit: Wix)
After a few cooler and even rainier days, this coming week will become quite hot. There's an old "adage" that I've adopted over the years: it's hot before Yom haAtzmaut (Independence Day) and then it gets cold on the day itself. In fact, it's usually warm on Yom haZikaron (Remembrance Day), but the winds start to blow and temperatures fall as the ceremony switches from one day's remembrance to one day's celebration. This year should be no exception. Westerly winds will give way to southerly winds and lower pressure, which will bring temperatures into the 30s C/80s F on Wednesday, leaving them around 30 C/80 F on Thursday. However, late Thursday will see a change back to more spring-like temperatures, preceeded by strong winds, and next week might even bring a more "winter-like" rain! So, where's the exception? You might say that Independence Day is Thursday but Independence Day really occurs on Friday (5th Iyyar), which shows forecast temperatures in the low 20s C/70s F in Jerusalem. The celebration was moved up so as not to impinge on Shabbat preparations. So, in Israel, the Hebrew calendar date seems to determine the weather regardless of the secular date.
As to why it cools off at this time: I think that there is an intermediate period when the Indian Monsoon (that brings our summer's dryness) is not quite established, opening the door for cooler weather from the north via Europe.
Image credit: The Jerusalem Herald Keeping all these wind directions straight is not very easy. This leads me to note that I finally figured out why men don't ask for directions. During the holiday we did a bit of traveling here and about. We needed to make a turn, swing around, and head into a parking lot. Of course, we didn't know it was that simple when we started. So, I say to my wife: "Which way?" She starts to speak when suddenly Mrs. Waze starts to argue with her. They couldn't decide between left or right, and we missed our turn.
Then, Mrs. Waze tells me to turn left into a street that's backed-up. I was forced to do a u-turn in a place where I'm not sure that it's legal (but the police didn't mind) and we gave it another try — which also didn't work out. My wife threatened to turn off Mrs. Waze but Mrs. Waze yelled out that this would be a mistake and that I should listen to her instead. Fortunately, my daughter who is not a wife (yet) managed to extradite us from this situation and we arrived safely. So, it's not that men don't ask directions ever, it's that they don’t want to ask the occupant in the right front seat. Of course, I should have known this because I used to sit in the back seat of our family car, offering my advice as well when things didn't seem to be working out between the two front seats — and that was before Mrs. Waze made things even more complicated (or worse, if you prefer). Fortunately, when the wife says to take out the garbage, I know how to get there without directions. For those of us who must observe Yom haZikaron in sorrow, I wish only future happiness.
Dr. Lynn is a lecturer at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Earth Sciences Department. He is also CEO of Weather It Is, LTD, a company that specializes in reducing weather risk.