It’s not crazy, it’s just Alabama

Published 10:27 pm Tuesday, March 3, 2009

If you thought Alabama weather was crazy, the last seven days has certainly proved that hypothesis. Since last Wednesday, we have had warm weather, severe weather, floods, snow and bitter cold the last two days. That about covers the whole spectrum of weather.

I’ve heard people say if you don’t like the weather, then wait a few days because it will change, and it sure did this week. You almost needed every kind of outfit this week.

It started out Wednesday and Thursday with many wearing short-sleeves. I even think I saw a few people wearing shorts. On Friday and Saturday, you needed raincoats and umbrellas — and even some waders if there was flooding near you.

Sunday, you needed snowshoes, gloves, hoodies, heavy coats and toboggan, and I’m not talking about a sled. Monday was more of the same except you didn’t need the snowshoes but you did need some shades.

One of our online readers commented that we are having very odd things happening including the recent earthquakes, but odd weather is really the routine in Alabama. I can remember having 80-degree days in January and 40-degree nights in August. We can have single digits in March but not go below freezing for three weeks in December. February may be a warm month, but then you have to bundle up if you go to an outdoor event in May.

I’ve seen Iron Bowls where sleet and snow were falling, other years when it was almost like a September day and then even a tornado coming close to Legion Field.

Really, there is no way to expect what kind of weather we’re going to have in Alabama. The only things I’m pretty certain about are that July is always hot and humid and the temperature won’t reach 90 before March or after October.

As far as anything else, all bets are off. That’s probably what drives meteorologists crazy as far as predicting long-term forecasts.

When I’ve tried to do stories looking at the overall season, I’ve pretty much gotten the same response: there is an equal chance of having normal, above normal or below normal temperatures and precipitation. There’s just no way to predict if and when we’ll get a lot of rainfall three months out much less five days out.

It’s this uncertainty that I like about living here. Change always happens, and we just have to adapt.