A pause for rain tonight
Looks like we're going to interrupt this fabulous autumn weather for a bit of rain over the next day or two. A bit like last week, we are looking at a period of rain early in the workweek - overnight Monday into Tuesday. But unlike last week's nor'easter, this weather will come to us from the north and west, with a lot less moisture.
Forecasters at the National Weather Service's forecast office in Sterling, Va., are giving us a 50 to 60 percent chance for rain between 2 a.m. and 9 a.m. Tuesday, with only a few tenths of an inch in the prospect. The culprit this time is a stationary front (blue line on the map) draped from west to east, hanging just to our south, and a series of disturbances (red "L"s) that will be sliding along the front.
Once that front drops farther south on Wednesday, high pressure will build back in from the north and west. That will bring back the sunshine for Central Maryland, although some chance for lingering showers may persist in Southern Maryland.
The rest of the week, and the weekend, will feel like a repeat of last week, with sunny skies, daytime highs in the 60s and lows in the 40s. Some of the normally cooler spots north and west of the urban corridor may dip into the 30s for the first time this fall.
Those of us trying to keep our fingers off the furnace "on" switch got a chance over the weekend to build up some solar heat in the house. The high at BWI-Marshall touched 76 degrees Sunday afternoon. We managed 74 degrees on the WeatherDeck in Cockeysville, and our indoor temperature climbed from 68 degrees to 70. But the low outside this morning was 41.
We did put the electric blanket on the bed Saturday morning. We hooked it all up, but so far have not had to throw that switch either.
I was thinking this morning that, instead of setting a calendar date as our target for turning on the furnace (ours is Nov. 1), we should, instead, go by the indoor temperatures. At 68 degrees, it felt cool, but not yet uncomfortable. Maybe 65 degrees would be a better threshhold, at which we could justifiably fire the burners.
Then I started to think that indoor humidity ought to be figured into the calculation, too. Without the furnace or AC on, the humidity can rise to cave-like levels, making the place feel dank. We're up to 49 percent this morning.
If you're grappling with hard times, this is surely serious business. Utility costs are no joke. But if you still have a job, and can afford the juice, and the gas (we use both), maybe the whole thing is silly. Why not use it, be thankful and enjoy the comforts of home? Is this a pointless mind game we're playing with ourselves? What do you think?