Spanish fire ignition

I saw this headline on the pisspoor CNN site:

And I was immediately reminded of this meme* (which I have to say is still one of my all time favourites):

And continuing the coprological theme, you can file this “flammable stuff will catch fire when it gets hot enough to catch fire” revelation under the heading “Sherlock, No shit”:

Authorities said the fire likely began when an “improperly managed” pile of manure self-combusted in the heat, causing sparks.
Spontaneous ignitions can occur when flammable materials, such as piles of hay, compost or manure heat up to a temperature high enough to cause combustion, according to the US National Park Service.

Notwithstanding that for shit to catch fire, it really does have to be very hot, prompting all sorts of trendy hashtags like “#climatechangeisreal” and the like. And yes, it is, but I’m so fed up of the way it’s shared with us. So yes, I need to do a proper Climate Change post, but that’s for another day.

Meanwhile, temperatures in Europe continue to rise even beyond the heady heights of this time last year, when we were dying of heat on the Canal du Nivernais. This was the heatmap for France this last week:

I mean the one on the left, obviously. If ever there was a poster pic for the Climate Change media, this would surely be it. Ugh.

The top temperatures being experienced across France and Spain are certainly toasty, but certainly no worse than a warm February day out in Paarl, which does make me wonder why there aren’t more manure fires each summer in our Winelands.

Maybe South Africans are just better at managing their shit?

 

* The original painting is known as “Portrait Of A Young Man”, painted by Italian artist Alessandro Allori in 1561. The painting is currently exhibited in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. 

As I was saying…

right here.

It’s HOT.

And then God hath spake unto the people of Cape Town and He hath said:
“And lo, now I am going to evaporate whatever puddles of muddy water there may be left in your dams!”
And the people did not rejoice and they were not joyful.

They were rather sweaty though.

Vive le (temperature) difference

Much mirth and merriment on SA Twitter yesterday as the UK basked in a “heatwave”, getting up to (in some cases) the low to mid 30s Celsius.

I’m sharing this one example, not for any other reason other than because I particularly enjoyed it:

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Amateurs indeed.

But, as your lovable local “Soutie“, can I just make the case for the other side too?

Because when you Saffas are all:

OMG! It’s so cold. I’m FREEZING! #hypothermia

throughout the winter months, while it’s a balmy 15ºC… well… how do you think I’m looking at you?

It’s almost – almost – as if the climatic conditions in the UK and SA are generally quite different, thus giving the local populaces disparate reference ranges for their understanding of “normal” weather and temperatures.

Who knew, hey? 🙂

Here and There

It’s no surprise that it’s around this time of year that the meteorological differences between my hometown and my adopted hometown are at their most distinct and obvious. That said, it’s always something of interest when there’s concurrently snow in Sheffield and a heatwave in Cape Town. Yesterday was one of those days.

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That’s Sheffield on the left, by the way.
Eagle-eyed readers with knowledge of the False Bay coastline (it’s a small subset, but it must apply to someone), will already have noted that Fishhoek, Simonstown and the rest of the Peninsula are missing from the horizon on that apparently rather washed out second shot. That’s due to the thick smoke from the fires currently burning in Elgin over the weekend, (as you can see from the helpfully annotated image below).
Sadly, I don’t think this view will be quite the same a it was a couple of weeks ago.

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Meanwhile, as Flickr friend SheffDave’s photostream confirms, things were altogether colder and whiter in the Steel City.

Personally, I don’t particularly mind either sort of weather, as long as I know it’s coming. The effects of the snow and cold can be overcome with warm clothing (or finding a pub with a fire); the somewhat unpleasant heat by wearing fewer clothes (or being lucky enough to live in a house with a swimming pool).

Drink water fam

It has been a thoroughly depressing start to the year in South Africa: the economy and the currency are tanking, the exam results weren’t great (allegedly), the heatwave and drought are biting, farmers are suffering, prices are rising (and seem likely to rise further) and all in all there seems to be a very limited amount to look forward to right now.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the “speak first, think later” nature of social media, Facebook and Twitter have reacted poorly, with arguments over everything – some reasonable, many not – as the under- and over-sensitive members of society continue to find myriad reasons to offend and be offended. And if that wasn’t enough, the whole situation is generating thinkpieces and open letters like there’s no tomorrow.

Won’t somebody please think of the children?
Actually, won’t someone please just. think.

But there are still occasional gems if you’re willing to wade through the BS. The heatwave is hitting our neighbours in Botswana too, and the government there is warning their citizens on twitter:

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I’m not sure that the science is absolutely right (in fact, I’m pretty sure that the science is absolutely wrong), but it does get the message across, which is the important thing.
And, because the sun actually is technically a bit closer to the guys in the picture, if you have such beasts in your back garden, make sure you look after them too.