17 Jul 2009

A Mediterranean Oven and the travelling Sahara...

Huh? Travelling Sahara?! Yup! I'll bet you guys didn't know deserts like to travel, eh? ;o)

(photo from National Geographic)

See, they have this nice fine element called SAND (and the sand from the Sahara is a very fine grain) that just loves to get picked up on the wind heading north and go visit other places around the Mediterranean. When it reaches us we call this wind by one of two names: Sirocco or Lebeche. The Sirocco comes in as a southeast wind (from the coast of Algeria for example), very strong, usually ripping it's way across the Mediterranean so charged with humidity and lots of sand (you should see the state of cars parked in the street once it's over!). The Lebeche on the other hand hits Alicante as a southwest wind (there's a better definition on the Spanish wikipedia page). It also starts off in the Sahara (but let's say from Morrocco), but makes its way across the Peninsula, leaving any moisture it may have had stuck behind the mountain ranges it crosses in the form of rain. By the time it reaches us it's hot and very DRY! (this is known as the Foehn effect)

Let me tell you about the weather today. It's hot, damn HOT! So hot I'm having trouble breathing! It's barely past noon and I've already drunk a litre of water!

Here's what the internet says:
35ºC (is 32ºC in the house)
15% humidity
That's what, about 95ºF? Just so you know, the temperature rarely goes over 32ºC here and the humidity in summer is almost always above 70%...

There's a lovely breeze blowing through the apartment, but somehow it just makes things worse!

and then there's this:

the view from the balcony.

Lovely, right? Well the horizon is only supposed to be this crisp in winter! When the humidity is lower than summer. I can't remember the last time I didn't see a hazy horizon in summer!

The wind is coming in from the southwest... so I'm wondering of the Lebeche is paying us a visit... GO AWAY!!! I want to be able to breathe again!

And to think I need to make my way into town this morning to pick up a few things... if it's this hot out here at the Cabo, the center is really going to be a furnace! I'm imagining 40ºC in the parking garage where I'm going to leave the car. Yikes! I think I'll high-tail it to my parents place with some material to work on in a lovely air-conditioned environment! :p


  1. Such a lovely view from your balcony. My daughter and her boyfriend just returned from Spain. They have incredible photographs, but said the heat sapped even their energy for clicking the shutter!

  2. Hi Bonnie!

    Yeah, travelling in Spain in July and August is kind of crazy! On the coast it's hot and humid, inland it's even hotter (but thankfully dry!). I've never visited Sevilla or Cordoba, and one of the reasons is because I only had time in the summer... and no way would you catch me in Andalucía in the summer! Ouch!

    Best thing this time of the year is either the beaches or the north... the lovely green mountains of Asturias, Cantabría, the Basque Country or Galicia. Of course the reason it's green is the rain so it also entails a certain risk! ;o)

  3. Sorry Chris, that view is worth whatever!

  4. Well I've got the same view today (same nice DRY day) but the mercury has dropped down a few degrees, so I'll agree with you on that one Nancy!

    But I'm lucky with this place! Those who live a bit further inland get the heat and (usual) humidity but not the view...

  5. This is so interesting. I love learning new things and I found this fascinating. Now as much as I love all things beachy and I love sand — I do not like sand storms! It just bites at you and it hurts!

    We need something to come and lower the humidity around here. Today's forecast calls for 92°F and the humidity is already at 79%. I dislike humidity intensely!

    BTW, your comment the other day gave me an idea for a posting next week dedicated to you. I'm going to talk about the history and art of tikis…stay tuned.

  6. We're supposed to maybe set a record low today. When I finally crawled out of bed it was 63F. My daughter had to travel to Oklahoma City on business. One day it was 107F. crazy! I like it cool, but the kids can't swim.

  7. Rhonda, the heat & humidity in August is what made me intensely dislike south Florida...

    My parents say we've lived through a nasty sandstorm, in Saudi Arabia, but I don't remember... was in the early 80s! :p

    63F Lily?! Definitely too cool for the summer! I like my temperature in the 20sC ;o)


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