Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Welcome to the Mediterranean

Here is a video from the French port of Marseilles, which is the far western end of the French Riviera. This is not generally a place where you get heavy winter weather. The average low temperature for the area is 39, well above freezing. As one travel site notes: "Marseilles enjoys typically sunny Mediterranean weather year-round with only a slight chance of rainfall no matter what month you visit. I decided to escape to the French coast a couple of years ago and was not far from Marseilles. I was a bit further to the West but no further south than Marseilles.

It was somewhere around the end of February or early March when I flew into Montpelier and headed off to the beach resort I remember that the airport was quite warm that day. And the entire week I spent at the beach was warm. It didn't really get very cool in the evenings at all.
So for Marseilles to get this much snow is extremely atypical. In the average year Marseilles gets zero snow. None. To go snowboarding down the streets is not how it is supposed to be.

Here is some film from the snow that hit Malibu this last December. Sure it's now much but it's not supposed to be there at all. The average low during the worst of winter is 50.

Odd weather. No doubt the sort you get once in a few decades. Except, as the video below shows, they had snow last winter as well.

And who can forget what happened in Las Vegas this December? A week after I was there for a couple of days (I really do hate this city) it got blanketed with a couple of inches of snow.