Monday, July 30, 2007

Christmas in July Gift-Wrapped With Nice Weather, But the Party's Over

It was a memorable weekend thanks to wonderful weather from the Brickyard all the way to Oshkosh, Wisconsin where my family and I celebrated Christmas in July. It was also fun looking up at all the amazing planes taking place in the world-famous EAA show. The weather was so nice the pilots were skywriting happy faces in the sky. I watched in amazement at how the smiley face drifted with the upper-level winds from northwest to the southeast, just like the weather balloons would do when I sent them up through the troposphere while I was in college. The weather was so nice I didn't have to worry about receiving coal as my Christmas in July gift.

You can see the presents in the middle of a big circle. We drew numbers and had fun sharing and exchanging little knick-knack gifts. I drew a low number so my John F. Kennedy coins were taken from me and I was given an old golf visor. Basically if you draw a higher number you can pick out a random gift and if you do not like it you exchange it for a present that was picked ahead of you by somone who drew a low number. At first I picked out placemats when my number was drawn and I quickly snagged the collector coins. Eventually I somehow ended up with a golf joke book. This is the perfect gift for me. It will allow me to keep my sense of humor while golfing. I will certainly put the book to good use.

If you are wondering why in the world my family was celebrating Christmas in July, it is for all the relatives we do not get to see during the normal holiday season in the winter. We all know how tough it is in today's day and age to see everybody during the holidays. It works out quite well.

Our gift-wrapped presents were much like the weather we have experienced so far in July. We have had it easy. But it looks like the party is over! We will finally see the hot and humid weather we have been dodging much of the summer. Take a look at our 90 degree day graph.

The hot ridge of high pressure that has sat out West for much of the summer bringing the hottest July on record for many parts of Montana will move eastward due to a more progressive jet stream. This dome of hot air will effectively block any cold fronts from moving our way. Also, do not expect any miracle cut-off low pressures to develop like we saw last week. That cut-off low pressure that came all the way from Maryland and effectively kept us cooler was a once in a 25 year event.

Now we need to brace ourselves for our hottest 21 day stretch of the year beginning on Wednesday. Today is the anniversary of our last official 100 degree day in Lafayette, which took place in 1999. I remember that day very well with heat index values of 120 to 130 across the area. Our news team also did a live-shot at the Frankfort Hot Dog festival. We all thought we were going to turn into hot dogs. We were literally cooking out there! It is a reminder of how hot it can get this time of year and that we have a long way to go before we can call off the dog days of summer. I will have more about this heat wave here on the blog this week and we will take an in-depth look at the full red moon that has been hovering over the Lafayette skyline with dramatic results.

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