And now, a break for science.
Water has a relatively high thermal capacity, compared to air. That means it takes more energy to heat it up, and it retains its heat for longer. If you have a large body of water, like say an ocean or a Great Lake, the overall effect on the surrounding air can be pretty significant.
During warm months, land areas near a large body of water might not heat up as much as other areas that are getting a similar about of sun, because the water is actually absorbing so much energy. And in the winter, the water cools down more slowly than the air around it – it releases heat, so land around it will be less cold. And on a smaller temporal scale, this moderating effect is still in play.
What that meant for me as someone who lived five minutes from Lake Huron was that unless there was a thunderstorm, temperature changes from hour-to-hour and even day-to-day were generally pretty gradual. If it was warm enough for shorts yesterday, I’ll probably be fine wearing shorts today, too. And if I had to put on a sweater this morning, chances are, I’ll still be rocking long sleeves this afternoon.
Cochrane is not near a large lake. I mean, some of the lakes in the general area are kind of big – I wouldn’t want to try to swim across them – but they’re not quite Great, you know?
A fifteen degree swing here in a day is perfectly normal. It seems like a five degree swing in the span of an hour is not even unheard of, depending on whether there’s a cloud near the sun. Just one cloud – that’s all it takes.
So I actually have to consult a meteorological source daily to indirectly get told what I should be wearing. You know what I wore yesterday? A tank top and shorts. Today, I wore jeans and a long sleeved shirt, and I was desperate for a sweater when I was walking around town. We have only been here a month and we’ve already had days where there was frost on our cars in the morning and by lunch time, even the non-super-pregnant people were sweating.
What is this madness?
I would really like to deal with this situation in a reasonable way, but I’m not sure what the answer is. Perhaps I should never leave the house for more than an hour at a time. Maybe I should keep a suitcase in my car for all of my potential clothing needs. Better yet, I could consider investing in an entire wardrobe of tearaway pants.
Of course, if my husband is reading this, I’m probably in hot water. I’m getting cold feet trying to finish this blog post, because Mr. B knows I’m just blowing hot air – even when the temperature was completely predictable, I was still horribly under prepared for whatever conditions we were facing. I’m sorry I pretended this issue was heating me up. That wasn’t cool.