The last week or so has been somewhat quiet weatherwise, with not much to comment on--also, as our school gets closer to state testing, things get real busy, eating up a lot of my free time. Such is the life of a teacher.
Overall, the weather has been fairly benign, moving into a rather typical late spring pattern--late-night and early morning low clouds, with partial clearing by the afternoon. Highs in the 60s, lows in the 50s--definitely a welcome respite from the 103°F highs early last week. The marine layer actually created some very light drizzle once or twice in Monrovia, enough to feel but not enough to wet the pavement. Today is expected to be a little bit warmer--we could actually see the sunrise this morning--with highs in the mid-70s, with Friday, more of the same.
May opens up with a chance of rain late Friday night through Saturday morning. A late-season storm will be moving through California rather quickly; no snow is expected, except on the highest peaks--snow level is above 7000 feet. Precipitation values in the San Gabriel Valley are expected to be between a quarter- to half-inch, all of which should be gone by noon Saturday. Again, not a drought-buster, but every little bit does help.
Tomorrow, May 1, is May Day; being a cross-quarter day (midway between the vernal equinox in March and the summer solstice in June), May Day used to mark the first day of summer--at least until the adoption of the Gregorian Calendar, when the dates of the seasons were shifted to where they are currently. Though preempted by the international Socialist movement as International Workers' Day in a good portion of the world, the traditional May Day celebrations still take place in many places, though its popularity has faded noticeably over the years. I can remember making may baskets--small baskets containing flowers or candy--when I was in elementary school in the late-1960s and early-1970s, then leaving the baskets on the front porches of some of my neighbors; it was almost like a repayment of the treats at Halloween (another cross-quarter day). Though we never danced around a maypole, or elected a May Queen, we learned about them, even in Southern California. When both my sons were in elementary school, they had learned nothing about it, and were not even aware that May Day was anything other than a distress call on the radio.
Like Halloween, May Day celebrations have their roots in pre-Christian Europe as essentially a summer celebration, though if one does the research, there is a lot more to it. It seems odd that Halloween, as a dark celebration, is much more popular than May Day, which is much more bright and joyous in character. Though the Puritans of New England condemned the maypole as a phallic symbol (and evidence from some parts of northern Europe show that the Maypole was used in the worship of Freyr, the phallic fertility god in Germanic and Norse mythology), some of the May Day customs (such as may baskets) can be gestures of good will and friendships--something desperately needed in today's world.
Make it a great day!