Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Spooky Weather

Today in Montreal we matched a record high temp. of 25°C, or 78°F. (That record was set only two years ago.) High humidity made it feel more extreme. It’s been balmy all week, and promises to stay this way through the weekend. (Toronto, meanwhile, will be going up to a muggy 30°.) Everyone is saying, “What beautiful weather,” but with it comes a perceptible unease: the unseasonable warmth has a touch of malignancy about it, as we hear reports about the polar icecap melting at unprecedented rates and leaving spreading black eyesores at the top of the world to heat up this sun stone even further. The late afternoons have that same wan autumn light we associate with jacket weather and the first ghostly traces curling out of our mouths; some of the trees on my street have already changed colour; others unchanged or with touches of red and gold, seem just confused; people pass by in shorts and tank tops, wondering what’s next. Today, shortly after noon, we turned on an air conditioner that last week we were contemplating taking down. I’m glad I arranged for my class of immigrant students to meet down here in a neighbourhood café for some English conversation rather than in our sweltering school: there we sat outdoors on a terrace, eyeing skimpily clad Outremontaises and comparing the weather to that in places like Cambodia and Peru.

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