Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Not Quite Indian Summer


Though today’s weather is forecast to be cooler, we’ve had some nice warm temperatures around here lately. I always thought that any stretch of summery days this time of year could be called Indian Summer. But according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac (“Useful, with a pleasant degree of humor”), a true Indian Summer must meet several criteria:

Temperatures are warm, but the atmosphere must also be “hazy or smoky,” with high barometric pressure, no wind, and cool nights, all of it caused by a “stagnant anticyclone high pressure weather system;”

The warm days must be preceded by a cold snap or hard frost; and

Indian Summer must occur between St. Martin’s Day (November 11) and November 20. As the old saying goes, “If All Saints (November 1) brings out winter, St. Martin’s brings out Indian Summer.” 

What, you’ve never heard that one? Me, neither. And how about St. Swithin’s Day—which I always thought was made up because I heard it on The Simpsons. (Bart: “Kippers for breakfast Aunt Helga? Is it St. Swithin’s Day already?”) Apparently, it’s a real saint’s day that occurs on July 15. I better mark my calendar for next year.

Anyway, even though we’ve had the hard frost and the unseasonably warm temps, it’s too early to call this Indian Summer. Makes me wonder how something that happens in November can be a ‘summer’ anything. But there you have it. Those Old Farmers wouldn’t lie.


2 comments:

lizy-expat-writer said...

I'm a bit confused - is your weather good or bad? - but those pumpkins/squashes look healthy.
Enjoy the frost - we could do with some here!

Jenny said...

The weather was warm, now it's cold, but in a few days it's supposed to be warm again. Pretty typical for Colorado.

I'm not sure about the squash. This is the first time I've tried growing them. I hope I'm not disappointed when I cook them!