The end of summer, according to our history of four seasons on this planet, is officially Sept. 23. But in reality, we kind of know that when Labor Day comes and goes each year — this year on Sept. 2 — we are changing our seasons from the hot, occasionally humid and usually windy Oklahoma summers, to cool and crisp.
OK, what happened?
America is messed up.
We celebrate Labor Day as the unofficial end of summer, and the weather forecast this past Monday was for like two solid weeks of 90s for highs, humid as all get out with light winds.
What the heck is happening?
This is Oklahoma. Now hot is not at all unusual on Sept. 1, but all this humidity, and almost no wind to dry things out and kill all that crabgrass that you can visually watch growing in my yard.
No wind? Are you kidding me? This is Oklahoma for Pete’s sake. A calm day in Oklahoma is a 15 mph wind.
Not this summer. In fact, windy days seem to be on the wane in this state.
Well, at least until those February days when we get a front through here and it’s 10 degrees outside and then the wind decides to blow.
The Autumnal Equinox as it officially is known, doesn’t come this year until Sept. 23, when fall (winter and summer are called a solstice) arrives.
No, spring is an equinox and so is fall. To me, these two get short shrift, because summer is sometimes brutal, as is winter. In spring and fall, these are transitions from cold to hot, and hot to cold.
We get a warming trend in spring out of winter, and a cooling trend out of summer in the fall.
Now, I’m only speaking from the perspective of an Oklahoman. I’m not from Minnesota or Maine, where the seasons are just totally different than ours, or from Florida or Louisiana.
However, whether you believe in climate change or not, our seasons have changed noticeably.
Our winters the past decade are not nearly as cold as they used to be.
Oh, there will be the occasional bitter day, but nothing like when I was growing up.
Winters were winters back then, wearing those heavy coats that were difficult to move your arms in, with weeks of temps most-times nearing zero.
And summers, they were hot and dry and windy.
So, when spring used to come around, you knew it. It suddenly got a bit uncomfortable to wear that long-sleeved shirt and the humidity made it really uncomfortable in the grade school/high school classroom.
Or, in the opposite, fall would be a definite season, when that first cool front barreled through Northwest Oklahoma, and you walked out of the house in the morning to head off for school, and you knew it was fall.
It felt like it.
I always looked forward to that first day you could feel that cooling in the air.
I still do.
But this past decade or a bit more, the seasons have kind of moderated.
I’ve noted before in this column, my heavy coats are collecting dust in closets. I can count on one hand the past five years the total days I’ve really needed a heavy coat.
Maybe you’ve noticed it too.
I’m still waiting on those hot, dry-wind days here this summer.
When the wind dries out the grass by 10 a.m. and it gets a bit crunchy. This summer, the grass is wet all day.
And, we seem to have an abundance of toad stools this summer to boot.
My watery-eyes, sneezing allergy to mold seems now to be 12 months out of the year, and not just two or three.
Climate change is here, and while it’s sometimes a bit gradual, our weather and our climate here in Oklahoma has changed.
I don’t have to have a scientist or a politician tell me climate change is here or it’s fake news.
I can feel it, live it and observe it for myself.
I’m my own judge of that.
We tend, as a people, to not really like change in our lives.
I kind of like change. It keeps things interesting.
I love that first day of fall, that first day of spring, when I can feel the weather a-changing.
I’m not getting that feeling anymore. It seems like it’s just getting warmer here, particularly in winter.
Maybe it’s just that I miss that more abrupt weather change when I know the season is changing.
Maybe, it’s just that I’m getting older and I miss those first days of school, or when Christmas rolls around and it’s not cold anymore, it’s mild or even warm.
What is happening to our weather?
Longing for a windy day here in suddenly calm Oklahoma!