Loose Ends: A few words to the weather-wise

dollyviscardiTalking about the weather is no laughing matter in these parts.
Out-of town visitors to the local county fair might think that conversations concerning the weather are small talk, but here it is serious business. It is a seasonal tradition, as when our short growing period is in full bloom we talk about winters past and winters future.
Wander around downtown or at the fairgrounds during fair week and you’ll hear all sorts of chit-chat about the weather. Stroll by the exhibits of various green and growing things and you’re sure to hear a comment on two about how this past year’s weather affected the crops. Go to the post office and listen to the ranchers and farmers greet each other.
“How’d you winter?”
“Did your hay get put up all right?”
“Didn’t have much summer yet, did we?”
“Bumper crop, this year … must have been all that rain in June.”
While the words appear to be light and casual, the apprehension about the weather moves in and hovers like our late afternoon thunderstorms. Allusions are made about the kind of winter that might be on the way this year.
“Nice weather we’re having isn’t it?” (Compared to the wet, late, spring that moved in at the end of May and stayed until July.)
“A bit too hot, seems like summer just got here, and everyone is complaining ’bout the too hot days.”
“Nights and mornings are getting cool, fall must be on the way.”
Fair time brings out the prognosticators for the coming winter, and if they are farmers or ranchers they have lots of natural signs that lead them to come to conclusions about the future fall and winter weather. City folks hear about the weather plenty, but most don’t have a vested interest. It is only when they have to drive in it, that it has any significance.
It may be August, but that is no excuse for turning our backs on summer to prepare for the colder weather that will soon be here. Summer is too short.