Turning The Corner?
It's the end of the first week in February, but yesterday we sat out on our south-facing side-terrace for lunch, and then as the sun moved around, transferred to the balcony to sit reading in the sun until seven o'clock. The sun actually dropped below the ridge on the other side of the valley at 6.30, but the first of the evening chill didn't make itself felt for another half hour.
Daytime shade temperatures are still chilly by (purely) local standards, reaching a maximum of around 16° or 17°, but the sun now has real warmth in it. So it looks as if already we are on the verge of spring, having enjoyed a very gentle winter. There have been odd days of rain, and indeed rain is forecast on four of the next fifteen days according to my internet weather app, but only two or three days when the rain has been torrential. We have also been spared high winds for the most part, and this year the winds and the rain have never coincided. This is so much different from last winter when heavy rain started on the 17th December (You remember these things!) and pretty much kept going for three months until Semana Santa, often accompanied by gale force winds and coming in horizontally. Indeed, we had so much rain last year that we have been able to be totally relaxed about the sparse rainfall this winter; all the reservoirs entered 2011 more than 80% full.
The next highlight will be when I swap my long-sleeved shirts for short sleeves; and the one after that, when shorts and sandals replace shoes and trousers. Fingers crossed!