Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer Afternoon Showers

By Bobbi

Summer in Florida is hot and humid, as you might guess. We’re closer to the equator than most parts of the country and that means we are closer to the sun, so the sun’s rays are stronger. Our normal high temperatures hover in the low to upper 90’s and seldom hit the 100 degree mark, though that does happen on occasion. It always feels warmer due to the high humidity.

Moisture in the air is a year-round occurrence. It can make a person feel like they need to shower right after they just stepped out of one. That’s probably because of the difficulty in getting water to evaporate off the skin. This is where baby or talcum powder comes in handy. Rub it on areas of the skin that come into contact with other skin on a regular basis, such as the inner elbow and underarms.

Our normal weather cycle during the summer includes thunderstorms, sometimes severe. Weather forecasters tell us the accumulated heat that builds up during the day from the sun beating down on all of the concrete and asphalt of our city helps cause the storms. They usually happen during the late afternoon hours and can last quite awhile. We normally welcome the rain because it helps cool everything down. However, watch out for those smaller storms that don’t last long. The sun comes out again immediately after they’re over making the heat and humidity worse than before. The best way to describe how it feels is like you’re walking around in wet air.

A lot of the houses in our area, especially the older ones, were built without eaves or downspouts so the rainwater runs right off the roofs onto the ground. This can be a problem if a homeowner wants to grow flowers in that spot or a driveway is located next to it. You can end up with bare spots in the lawn; it makes getting in and out of a vehicle without getting wet tricky.

I have gotten soaked many times after forgetting to take my umbrella with me. Believe me, walking around looking like a raccoon because my eye makeup has run down my cheeks is not my idea of a fun time! Those of us who live in Florida know to take umbrellas with us leaving one in the car, one in the house, and one at work at all times.

Our rainfall count is way behind what we normally get. In fact, our favorite TV forecaster says we are in near desert conditions since we haven’t received any rain at all so far this month. You couldn’t tell that from looking around because everything is green and flowering. However, if you take a walk, say at a local park, it doesn’t take long to kick up lots of dry, sandy soil.

Maybe it’s time for more of those afternoon showers.

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