Sunday, 23 July 2006

Wailing Wind

According to a Dutch newspaper today, the weather in Holland is stuck in a so-called 'Omega-blockade', which means that the hot weather in the west of Europe will remain. They even predict a big chance on a hot August, after the record breaking temperatures of July.

I am happy for everybody, for all that good and hot weather in July which in other years regularly spoilt a lot of summer fun. But I am not happy with it myself. I already written about the Communicating Weather Barrels: it is good weather in Greece, in the west of Europe they have bad weather and vice versa. In the middle of summer the weather cannot become that bad in Greece when summer is playing a hot game in Western Europe, but this July the weather is not quite normal here.

I never was that cold in July in Eftalou. For the whole month now a nasty north east wind plays around the Aegean Sea. When we drove to Lapsarna last week it was even too cold to stay on the beach, jumping into the high waves of the sea was impossible. In Gavathas it was that cold that we were forced to have lunch in the blazing sun.

It is not the wind is that cold all the time, but it can be that strong that you get crazy because of the strong draughts and the banging doors. Temperatures here are pretty high, so it feels nice to open doors and windows for a little air. With this wind you have the choice to be in the middle of a tornado or in a hot oven. A little draught does not harm your house, but this draught blowing everything to pieces makes me crazy! You have to bind all the tomato plants in order to save them from breaking, flowers bend that low that they break. No way to secure your table cloths, you have to secure everything. The seawater was lovely in June but now feels like an ice cold ouzo.

No warm Greek nights anymore. Eating with a screaming wind around your ears is no fun, so we eat inside. At night I sleep under my cover like in winter. This is July! So if I must believe the Dutch weather predictions and the Communicating Weather Barrels, this 'Omega- blockade' will take care that this north east wind will not cease...

Do not picture me in a thick coat shivering with the cold. The temperatures here are around 30°C, so especially in daytime it is warm. People staying in places out of the wind do not know what I am talking about. They love the little air that is blowing some coolness into their days. This wind however has other dangers.

Last week some 250 people and many planes were fighting a fire that raged south of Mytilini, close to Agias Ermogenis. Hundreds of hectares of woodland and cultivated land and at least 5 houses were destroyed by the flames. The strong winds helped the flames to become a roaring fire. It was a wonder that more houses, a hotel and some shops got spared. It was the worst fire in years on the island.

We should be happy here in Eftalou, because in Thessaloniki and in Athens some garbage dumps 'caught' fire. For the first time I read that they were concerned about the air pollution caused by these fires. Believe me, with such a fire in Holland, the whole of Thessaloniki should have been evacuated! The mayor of Thessaloniki accused the government of 15 years neglect of the problem with garbage dumps and garbage fires. Is there hope that something will change...

Two days ago smoke was also seen above the garbage dump up from Eftalou. A firefighter truck was seen speeding to the fire. I did not notice it, because of the wind coming from the north east. This same wind I will be thanking on my knees, if this garbage fire above us really breaks out. Then the smoke does not get blown into our house. That always happens 'by accident' in the autumn. When we have a southern wind...

Copyright © Smitaki 2006

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