Thursday/ soaked ☔️

It’s a challenge to go for a run outside, or to play sport outdoors in the Pacific Northwest winter.
When it’s clear and dry, it may be too cold.
When it’s cloudy and milder, it may be raining.
There’s always skiing and snowboarding in the mountains, of course.

The beautiful new blue surfaces of the Miller Park Pickleball and Tennis Courts on 19th Ave. are soaked today.

Saturday/ the cold and damp 🌫

In restless dreams, I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
‘Neath the halo of a street lamp
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
– From ‘The Sound of Silence’ by Simon & Garfunkel (1964)

I stepped out of my house into the cold to take a few pictures of the fog, late last night.

Friday/ never mind the snow ⛄️

There’s a little snow on the way this weekend for the low-lying areas around Puget Sound, say the meteorologists.

This picture appeared in the South African newspaper Die Burger (‘The Citizen’) today, obtained from a Facebook post. Rudi, Patrick, Jacques and Ferdie are South Africans working on a farm near Nekoosa, Wisconsin. They refused to let a little snow and 25 °F temperatures stop them from their doing their regular barbecue.
Yes: better believe it when a South African says ‘Nou gaan ons braai’ (‘Now we’re going to barbecue’). Those are four favorite South African words. 🤗

Sunday/ a ferry ride 🛳

I tagged along with Bryan for a trip to Hansville, today.

Downtown Seattle. Checking out the 1200 Stewart St apartment towers from Denny Way. Construction has almost ground to a halt, it seems. About 10 of the 45 stories are still completely bare, and all of the floors still need balcony rails.
Tacoma Narrows Bridge. The twin bridges connect the city of Tacoma with the Kitsap Peninsula and carry State Route 16 over the strait called Tacoma Narrows.
Route 307. This is just north of Poulsbo, driving north towards Hansville.
Bainbridge Island Ferry Terminal.
On the Wenatchee ferry.  Departing Bainbridge Island. The Marine Vessel Wenatchee is a Jumbo Mark-II-class ferry that was launched in 1998, and has been doing service on the Bainbridge Island-Seattle route alongside the Tacoma.
On the Wenatchee ferry. A view of the Seattle skyline from inside the doors on the passenger deck. There is a bone-chilling windchill outside on the deck.
On the Wenatchee ferry. The view from the car deck down below.
Arrival at Seattle Ferry Terminal. 
Pioneer Square. This is the Sinking Ship Parking Garage, with the iconic 1914 Smith Tower behind it.

We drove south and around Puget Sound to get to the Kitsap Peninsula, and then took the ferry from the Bainbridge Island Terminal to get back to Seattle.

Saturday/ snow patrol 🌨

There was more snow on Friday night, with about 2 inches on the ground on Saturday morning.

I ventured out into the cold for a few pictures before the start of the USA-Netherlands World Cup match.
Congrats to Oranje for the win!


Friday/ cold and gray ☁️

Sunlight and heat were in short supply today (the high 38 °F/ 3°C), but I ventured out for a short walk before it was completely dark.

Looking west from 14th Avenue and East Thomas Street. The Space Needle has its ‘Christmas tree’ on.
The bright colors and lights of the Red Balloon Company toy store bring some much-needed cheer to 15th Avenue ..
.. as does the neon sign for Victrola Coffee nearby.
The remodeling at Coastal Kitchen restaurant is almost completed (a 63-year old drunk driver had crashed his vehicle into the entrance some seven months ago). The restaurant is scheduled to reopen on Tuesday Dec. 6 —for dinner and weekend brunch.

Wednesday/ snow on the ground ❄️

Parts of the city of Seattle had a little snow on the ground on Tuesday morning (the first of the season), and there was more on Tuesday night.
Rain and a 4°C high melted most of the snow today, but there may be more snow tonight, and during the next day or two.

Looking out from upstairs last night, just as I was heading to bed at 11.30 pm. I guess this is an inch of snow— not much more than that.
Look at this, reported by John Clarke for the Wall Street Journal:
Every year, Mr. Chevalier, 36, who works in digital marketing in the automotive industry, refrains for as long as he can from turning on his heat. Being thrifty, of course, factors in. Fuel is expensive this year and many people are cutting back. But beyond that, there is a flinty group that always tries to stare down thermostats come winter. Denying oneself decadent warmth for the noble suffering of being too cold is a proud tradition among austere New Englanders. “Are you a true New Englander? If your heat is already on, the answer is no,” the Boston Globe asked in a recent headline.

Tuesday/ the rain is back ☔

The rain is back after 14 days, an unusually dry stretch for November.
As of Monday, only 1.67″ had been recorded this month.
On average, November in Seattle sees 6.31″ of rain.

Looking south, down 19th Avenue East, with Stevens Elementary school on my right.

Saturday/ that’s a lot of snow 🌨

The city of Buffalo and its neighbors experienced potentially record-breaking snowfall, as officials said that more than 70 inches fell in Erie County — with more expected.
-Brendan Bannon for The New York Times

Friday/ a low sun ☀️ and blue sky 🔵

It was another day with nary a cloud in the sky.
The day’s high (47 °F / 8 °C) permitted outside activity, and the amigos were at it, on the Mount Baker pickle ball courts.

Here’s where the sun sits at 11.30 am: not very high. The enormous high-pressure system that had kept clouds and rain away the last 10 days will finally break down on Sunday.

Sunday/ a little sunflower 🌻

It was a hazy, sunny Sunday (81°F / 27 °C), warm for this late in the year.
Our 10-day forecast still does not show any rain.

Sometimes called the ‘little sunflower’, genus Helianthella, catches the last rays of the day at the T.T. Minor Playground off Union Street today. Helianthella is a genus of North American plants in the family Asteraceae.

Wednesday/ the storm: an update 🌪

From the New York Times:
Millions of Florida residents faced a harrowing night as wind, rain and storm surge from Hurricane Ian pounded the southwestern coast and moved inland late Wednesday on a path toward Orlando, knocking out power to more than two million customers statewide.
The latest:
A storm surge of up to 12 feet submerged cars, knocked over houses and trapped residents near where the hurricane came ashore west of Fort Myers. Some places remained too dangerous for water rescues, officials said, adding that they were taking down addresses to deploy resources once it was safe.
Ian is among the most powerful storms to strike the United States in decades, and Gov. Ron DeSantis said it would go down as one of the strongest in Florida history. It was just shy of Category 5 status as it made landfall about 3 p.m., but had been downgraded to a Category 1 by Wednesday night.

The storm called Hurricane Ian approached the Florida Gulf Coast with maximum sustained winds of almost 155 miles per hour, and made landfall at Cayo Costa with Category 4 strength.

Here’s 1528 Broadway Circle in Fort Myers, Florida, captured on a sunny day in 2019
[Google Streetview, 2019]
The same place, in the hours after Ian came ashore. During this time, a weather station near Fort Myers, Fla., recorded a water level seven feet higher than the average height of the highest daily tides, according to the National Hurricane Center.
[Photo: Marco Bello/ Reuters]

Monday/ here comes Hurricane Ian 🌪

There’s trouble brewing in the Gulf of Mexico: a monster storm system that’s 500 miles wide and at this point just about certain to make landfall in Florida. The trouble with the  large natural harbor and shallow estuary that is called Tampa Bay, is that water being pushed into it, has nowhere to go. So the storm surge level could reach up to 10 feet in some places.

Hurricane Ian was over Western Cuba on Monday night and gaining strength. It is a Cat. 2 hurricane right now (max. sustained winds of 105 mph). It might strengthen into a Cat. 4 and make landfall directly over Tampa Bay.
Pinellas County in the Tampa area is under an evacuation order for mobile homes and Zone A (the red areas) as of Monday night.
[Map from Pinellas County Emergency Management at]

Thursday/ a very dry summer ☀️

So that’s it: astronomical summer here in the North is over.
It turned out to be the driest one ever recorded at the Sea-Tac rain gauge.
Only 0.5 in. of rain fell for all of summer (usually more than 3 inches).
Rainfall is still well above normal for the calendar year, though.

Ah yes .. chilling on the fence, and catching a little of the dwindling afternoon sun.
There was a lot of activity around my house earlier in the day: it was pressure-washed all around, to prepare it for a new coat of paint next week.

Friday/ haze

The skies around Puget Sound have been clear for most of summer this year.
There was some smoke haze in the air today, though— with a warm weekend in the forecast:
Saturday 89 °F/ 32 °C
Sunday 83°F / 28 °C

I found myself on the 5th floor of an apartment building in Ravenna at sunset (near Roosevelt light rail station), attending a Seattle Tennis Alliance board meeting. That’s Green Lake on the right edge of the picture.

Saturday/ the last days of summer

It felt like fall this morning (high for the day only 71 °F /22 °C), with a spritz of rain on the ground.
This year’s summer brought stretches of hot weather, but no smoky skies from wild fires.

Gladiolus (sword lilies) making their last stand here on Capitol Hill. The gardens are dry and lawns are yellowed, but they will come back, of course.

Wednesday/ the last of the heat? 🔥

We had 87 °F (31 °C) today and it may get to 90 °F (32 °C) tomorrow .. but the days are getting shorter and the weather will start turning soon.

P.S. ‘Heat’ is a relative term, of course. I read on Twitter of the Chinese city of Chongqing that recently had 113 °F (45 °C) for two days, with the night temperature at 93 °F (34 °C).

The air outside is around 60°F  (15 °C) early in the morning, and I like to open the front &  back door to get some cross-flow of cool air. Soon the morning sunlight blazes in as well, though⁠— and bounces off the kitchen floor onto the wall. Time to close the door!

Monday/ twilight

Here’s Seattle photographer Tim Durkin’s picture as night falls on the Emerald City.
Yes, The Mountain is out —and had been out for most of the day.

The high today was 83°F (28°C).
We’re on our way to another 90 °F (32 °C) high, on Thursday.
That might be the last one for this summer.

Picture Credit: Tim Durkan @timdurkan on Twitter

Sunday 🌞

Artwork from The Economist newsmagazine.

Today saw one more 95 °F/ 35°C high⁠— and made for a record stretch of 6 days with >90 °F highs.

Monday will be a little cooler, and we may even see rain on Thursday.
Fancy that.