Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Cold Front

In light of the rather extensive and unusually cold early snap that has sent snow falling all over Europe and the Southern United States I have been rather  reluctant to mention the effects of all this refrigeration on these sceptered isles set  at  a  modest 24 degrees north Latitude. It is cold by local standards, quite brisk with a  persistent north wind but compared to snowmen in Louisiana not much to talk about really. I have adapted one Vespa to ride in 55 degree nighttime low temperatures. I love the handlebar muffs, $30 of vinyl guaranteed to keep your hands warm and mostly dry in rain in any but arctic conditions.  Installation takes seconds and is entirely simple, plus no electricity is required...They look ungainly but they are lovely to wear when you are cold and busy riding.
 I get tired of explaining to hardier folk that 60 degrees in the Keys feels cold and damp and even though some few people understand that indeed the human body does adapt and grow used to temperature ranges no one really thinks 60 American degrees (15 Canadian) is cold. I think you have to live it to discover how cold the salt laden air is especially when the wind is blowing. And some few visitors to Key West are getting the local frozen treatment. Rusty I discovered in North Carolina last month actually enjoys cold weather even though he is superbly adapted to South Florida heat:
We haven't seen low temperatures like this in a  few years so this chill is a pleasant change but it is also a reminder of how hard it is to get used to cold feet and the chill of showering in a temperate climate. This is not the time to be taking outdoor showers despite the abundant sunshine. On the other hand a low of 55 and a high of 66 isn't outside the historical bounds when I took a  quick look at this rather extensive and thus confusing table from the NOAA Key West page: Historical Data LINK
 I like seeing other people out riding in this cold but I don't see many single headlights at night on Highway One when I come to town or leave in the night after work. And if you think 65 is an inconsequentially low temperature check out the gear these various visitors are wearing to ride.
In a way it does make it more seasonal for Christmas but I will be glad to return to warmer normals this next weekend. Humidity will be banished for a while but highs near 80 by day and lows near 70 by night will be perfect and most acceptable. I am not a weather hero.