It’s humid!

Image from blitzortung.org

I’m not sure if I’m allowed to use this image of last night’s big thunderstorms. Blitzortung.org shows the movement of thunderstorms across the world with almost live graphics of lightning strikes. I looked a while ago and there is another group of storms coming up from the southwest tonight. I guess we really need the rain, I’m not complaining. I just feel hot and my glasses keep steaming up!

It’s interesting to watch other parts of the world but I wish I could also see rainfall radar at the same time as the thunderstorms may just be showers with rain covering only small areas, like microbursts.

Drought?

It might rain today, but most of England is parched. The south east, south midlands, and eastern counties look dry and brown from satellite images. We are in the same heatwave that has affected the rest of western Europe. Forecasts say the weather is due to break soon. But with thundery showers due there is not the persistent rain for many days that would replenish the ground water and because the soil is so hard and dry it is compacted and heavy rain could cause flash flooding…. Oh well, Brits always discuss the weather!

I want thunder and lightning!

I want the skies to darken, the winds to rise, I want a swirling storm, dancing leaves. Gusts and gales and the patter of heavy raindrops! I thought we were having that earlier but realised it was water pattering down on the kitchen roof from the hose! Instead of watering the plants he was watering the roof! He thought it would cool the air. Its 15°C cooler today than yesterday! We need relief for humans and the countryside. But not just here, worldwide. The trouble is its not just one country suffering.

Thunderstorms were forecast but haven’t happened yet. I’m watching www.http://blitzortung.org to see where the storms are. They seemed to be concentrated around France and Switzerland earlier on…..

Rain clouds

Big puffy cloud seen in Newcastle under Lyme this afternoon. We did get a heavy rain shower afterwards and apparently there was a big thunderstorm a few miles away. The UK sits just in the right place to get weather from the North, South, East and West. With that and the jet stream moving about above us means that we can get ‘a year’s weather in a day’ as the old saying goes. In some places, such as the lake district, where they get a LOT of rain, they even make a joke of it and sell postcards with cartoons about rain and wet sheep on them!

Massive thunderstorm and huge(ish) hailstones!

Wow! I’ve ever seen hailstones this big. I know there are bigger ones but these re the biggest I’ve ever seen…

It’s already melted, but it was so heavy my plants were bashed. Now? Bright sunshine. Mad weather, global warming? Could be, the thunderstorms these days are bad ass!

Have you heard of ‘Thunder Snow’?

No? Neither had I.

But in Edinburgh yesterday they got it! Basically it was a thunderstorm but because it was so cold there was snow instead of rain. The descriptions were that the lightening was brighter then normal (the whiteness of the snow made the light reflect more brilliantly). The thunder sounded like an explosion (muffled by the snow and clouds). Some people even rang the emergency services. Apparently its a rare phenomena but not unknown.

Ball lightening?

I was just reading an article in the New Scientist on line about the phenomenon of ball lightening. Then I remembered that I visited an old lady as part of my job, twenty years ago. We were having a chat over a cup of tea. She told me about when she was a lot younger. She was in her living room, maybe in the 1950’s? There was a lightening storm outside and she had got her window open as it was a hot day. Suddenly a ball of light floated in through the open window, bounced off the floor and then disappeared again. She had never seen anything like it but thought it might be ball lightening? I didn’t ask her much because I didn’t know what to ask. She went on to say that from then on she always unplugged everything electrical in the house and kept her windows shut in a thunderstorm in case it happened again.

I would love to see something like that. But would it be dangerous and knock out electrical equipment if they came into contact with each other? Strange how memories you’ve never had before can suddenly come back to you.