Memories of Weather



Memories of weather may not be objective, but they reflect our true experiences of the climate

As a child, I enjoyed poring over climate charts that showed the mean monthly precipitation in Petrograd or the highs and lows of temperature in Timbuktu. For all their precision, though, I can't help thinking that these charts told me little about what the weather was really like in these far-flung places.

After all, if someone asks me what the weather's like in Antarctica, I don't begin: "Well, the mean annual precipation is…" Instead, I say: "Well, in the winter it's dark for months, and even in the summer it's often blowing a hooley, and all you can see is snow."

So here are my totally subjective memories of the weather in a few different places where I've spent some time.

In choosing a weather symbol for each month, I'm not aiming at climatological certainty. It's not always sunny in the Rockies in July, August and September, but as I sit in the sweltering heat of mid-September outside my home in the mountain town of Rossland, it certainly seems that way. And it doesn't always pour with rain in Britain in June, but if you've ever tried watching the tennis at Wimbledon, you might be forgiven for thinking so.

These visualizations may not be scientific, but I think they're better than bar charts in capturing and communicating our true experiences of climate.

If nothing else, they illustrate rather nicely the conclusion I've reached from my travels on the seven continents, that the weather on the island of Britain is gloomier than almost anywhere else in the world, except, perhaps, Antarctica.


Would you like to see more of my visualizations?

Subscribe now and I’ll let you know whenever I create a new visualization

It’ll only be every couple of months or so, I won’t let anyone else have your email address, and you can unsubscribe at any time

Thanks for subscribing!

Check your inbox for an email to confirm your subscription

Oh no, something went wrong, and I was unable to subscribe you!

Please refresh your browser and try again


First published 14 September 2014

other pages on things made thinkable

Atoms   Real World Colour Wheels   If Taxes Were Simpleā€¦
Atoms   Real World Colour Wheels   If Taxes Were Simple…
brought to you by Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.