Monday, January 23, 2006

Hot Hot Heat and Cool change

One of the strange things about this part of the State of Victoria, and Melbourne in particular, is the phenomenon of the "cool change". You can nearly always depend on a quite dramatic change in temperature when the heat has been overpowering for a day or two. The heat is dry, unlike Manchester, but it can quite easily rise to the early 40s, only to drop 15-20 degrees, often in a matter of minutes.

The warm blanket of heat that has enveloped you suddenly takes on a brisker, fresher feel as the wind changes direction quite suddenly. The wind can pick up quite spectacularly, even sometimes taking down the fragile wattle and gum trees in its wake. The rain usually follows, along with a thunderstorm, and the whole place smells of damp baked earth and tarmac as the needle plummets and relief is felt all around.

The side effect of the storm can be that the lightning may ignite the tinderbox the heat has created, with bushfires resulting, as has happened over the past 2 days.

We're staying here...

Harrison in the rain as the "cool change" begins...

... which means a drop of 15 degrees in a matter of minutes.
And, in this case, a glorious sunset.


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