29 de março de 2013

The Easter résistence to the jet-stream...

There is little to be said about the general mood of the population in Potsdam as the Easter Sunday approaches. It seems that no celebration of faith can restore  la résistence  to endure the final stages of one of the longest winter recorded. Our eyes are saturated with the white monotonic glare of the snow. Our jackets ask desperately for a leave from duty, like a soldier tired from the service. But not yet. We still have ~1 week to go before the conditions improve to real spring standards. 

The battle currently fought by the Potsdamers during winter is just the last assault in a war that begun last summer. At the end of last year's summer the lowest extent of arctic sea ice since the 80ies was recorded. The heat trapped in the water (from the summer melting) of the arctic region was been gradually released into the atmosphere for ice to be restored during the winter.  This release warms up the atmosphere in the polar region resulting in a weakening and shifting of the jet stream (powered by the earth rotation and differences in atmospheric temperatures). With a weak jet stream the cold air from the Arctic is able to plunge further south (in this case south means Europe) and leading to stable and cold conditions. 

But there are some advantages of the on going battle. As the cold arctic air rambles on through our protective clothes, human structures and holiday plans, it reminds us of the higher forces at play in this planet. I reduces in a certain sense the never-fading human arrogance to levels that fit the spirit (go figure) with the ongoing Easter celebration. All will of course be forgotten and restored, either with the first warm days of the year or with the break of glazing sunlight.

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