Friday, December 19, 2014

Another Giant Passes Away

When I entered broadcasting back in the early 70s, I was fortunate to train under Tampa Weather Legend Roy Leep.  Roy was the Nash of Tampa and many top weather people visited our TV station (WTVT Ch. 13), one being Dr. Robert Simpson who was Director of the NHC.   Dr. Simpson, along with civil engineer Herb Saffir, developed the Saffir-Simpson scale to rate hurricanes by Category.  The scale has its flaws, but it is still in use today some 40 years later.  Robert Simpson was 102 years old.


What a wonderful rainy Friday as the first heavy rainfall in many months soaked both sides of Lake P.   The N-Shore saw 2-4”+ while the S-Shore generally was around an inch.   It appears our dry pattern of the past several months could be ending as we’ll have another rain chance late Sunday into Monday and then again on Tuesday as a strong cold front will sweep on through the Gulf South.  This will make for a very cold Christmas Eve & Christmas morning with a rapid warm up Christmas afternoon.   Long range, there are signs of the Arctic Blast returning into the lower 48 for the last week in December and into January.  I think we’ll be on the freeze watch many times this coming January.  Stay tuned!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Who You Gonna Call? Droughtbusters!

Yep, it sure looks like our dry pattern is coming to an end with several more rain opportunities coming before Christmas.  We need it since our yearly deficit is nearing 10”.  Friday looks rainy at times with the moisture coming in several waves.  There will be some dry hours mixed in with the showers but you should plan on having your rain gear handy.  Most of the showers should be gone by early Saturday with cooler and drier air filtering in behind a cold front.  That front stalls over the northern Gulf and another wave of moisture could be back over us towards dark on Sunday into early Monday.   But there’s more!  A strong cold front will blow through early on Tuesday with more showers so our CYCLE of dry weather may be turning wet during the next several  weeks & months.  That’s how the Planet operates, in CYCLES of dry and wet, cold & hot.


Traveling to Mom & Dad’s for Christmas week?   If you’re driving, I see no icing issues unless you are going north of a Memphis-D.C. line.   There will be a big storm develop early next week that will cause major air travel delays for folks trying to get home before Christmas.  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Rain Relief Coming...

The last time we received over an inch of rain during a 24 hour period was back in SEPTEMBER!   Our rainfall deficit for the year is now over 9”, but some relief is coming…if you can believe the computer models.   The season’s first Gulf Low is forecasted to form along the upper Texas coast on Friday and quickly move across SE LA/MS Friday evening into early on Saturday.   Rainfall totals are projected to be 1-3”+, easily the most in many months.    There is a small potential for strong storms Friday evening as the low moves through.  Cooler and drier air returns for Saturday & Sunday.   Looking into next week, another cold front will bring some showers on Tuesday with colder air coming behind it for Christmas Eve & Christmas Day.  Alas, no snow is predicted here, but Santa will find a way  to make kids happy as he does every year.   Ho Ho Ho !  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

It's Never Easy to Say Goodbye

I have seen the face of death many times through a wife, a brother, a Father & a Mother.  One was swift with little suffering and no opportunity to say goodbye.  The others were lingering health issues with great suffering & little quality of life at the end.   This weekend we buried my Wife’s (Brenda) Mother (Ann) who at the end was down to less than 70 lbs.    I am not smart enough to understand the Creator’s plan for the dying process.  I just know it is difficult for the individual and families involved.  However, out of the darkness often comes a light and that light was Brenda’s brother Jim who gave one of the most powerful, brilliant & profound eulogies I have ever heard.   We all have our faults but Jim highlighted his Mom’s strengths.  I hope my sons will remember me in the way Jim remembers his Mom, the person who gave him life.    The Priest made it clear saying many only believe in Birth, Life & then Death.  We, as Christians, believe in Life, Death & then RESURRECTION.   This was a weekend to realize our time on this Planet is finite and we all have a purpose.  I said good bye to my Mother-in-Law with the knowledge “til we meet again”.


I’ll get back to weather forecasting tomorrow.  Tonight I am still thankful for life, and so should you.   Don’t wait until your Mom or Dad dies and then regret not telling them “How Great Thou Art”.