WEATHER: Balmy Summer Breezes Gloss Over Continuing Health Dangers
Illustration: Summer Clouds (Image Credit: Dr. Barry Lynn © 2020)
The wind continues to blow, and as a result, the apples continue to fall off our tree. After a period of intense heat in late May, June turned out to be a tad on average cooler than normal. It was also quite windy, and it seems like the wind never stops. It's nice, but it makes you wish for just a bit more calm in these tumultuous times.
Our relatively cool, but beautiful, kite flying weather is courtesy of a broad trough of lower pressure in the upper atmosphere, whose origin is actually as far north as Scandinavia. Associated with this trough is a weak area of low pressure situated over the eastern Mediterranean, and as a result our winds have been blowing from the relatively cool northwest. Normally, we're under the influence of desert low pressure, which means high heat and quite stagnant conditions.
The weather for the rest of the week should stay cool, but next week we’ll have more summer-like temperatures. However, there is a lot of uncertainty in the forecast over the next two weeks, which makes sense as our weather is unusually cool for summertime, and the circulation pattern unusually wavy for this time of year. In fact, we don't really seem to be under the influence of the western edge of the Indian Monsoon, which usually brings us hotter weather as westward moving air sinks off the Jordanian mountain ridge.
It's great that summer seems on hold, as we can keep the windows open as we work or just play at home. A good breeze, like an apple a day, can keep the coronavirus away. Of course, it can't keep the husband out of the wife's hair. First, she suggested I work upstairs, and from there she asked if maybe I wanted to physically go to the University to work. It wasn't long, though, before she suggested I visit my parents, knowing fully well that the only way to get there is to sail, and that isn't exactly flying.
I'm still at home because, unfortunately, there was a lack of attention to keeping social distance and wearing masks, and now those newly infected are more than 1,000 a day. Of course, it begins at the top, and one can't really say that our ministers follow the rules they ostensibly set for the rest of us.
Quite frankly, though, I am a bit surprised that they have any time to pay attention to us (even the good number of us who voted for them). They've been too busy setting up ministries and jobs for themselves to notice that the citizens of the country could use some of those jobs. Do they realize that an unemployment rate of 20% is a five-fold increase from previous unemployment rates before the coronavirus struck?
The good news is that I am almost ready for my appearance before the Knesset Finance Committee. Sometime ago, we had to move to a bigger home, make renovations, etc, and more recently we've had additional expenses associated with having teenagers in the home. I feel very strongly that I, like the Prime Minister, should receive retroactive tax breaks going back a number of years. In my case, I think tax refunds going back about 15 years would be just about right. I'll tell the committee that we could really use the money, and the amounts would really make a difference in our lives. I realize that I am not the Prime Minister, but if he asks himself how many times it has rained on his parade since he became Prime Minister, he should realize that if anyone deserves a break I do.
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. Click here to read more of this writer’s work in The Jerusalem Herald.