Today's video starts with a look at a storm off the North Carolina coast, then winds through the twists and turns of the next week's changeable weather patterns.
THE CHAMELEON MONTH OF MARCH
This is the chameleon month of March. Always searching for a sense of identity, its days stagger through punches of waning winter, dance with the sunlit caresses of coming spring and hide behind thick clouds through the wind-swept battles between the two.
The midday sky looks brighter now, but the sun sneaks out of view before the dinner dishes can be cleared. Winter's cloak of white melts down to oozing mud and rushing streams. The crocus and daffodil bravely blossom, but wiser plants bide their time til a less treasonous season. Dark December, Jailer January and Fortress February no longer hold the keys around here. We peer out and the door to winter's dungeon creaks open.
And yet, rather than seizing this moment of weakness, rather than racing headlong into warmer times, spring prefers the test-market approach: try a hint of south wind here, a puffy cumulus there; teasing breezings between the freezings. Even the south wind has ragged, chilly edges on many a March day; subtle hints of warmth vanish all too quickly in the gathering dim of dusk.
Like a 12 year-old on Saturday morning, March is full of hope. However, Mother Nature and Old Man Winter rule the household. One day, with icewater in its veins, the northwest wind can blast in from the still frozen hinterlands of the Arctic north.
However, if the south wind quickens, there's usually some double-agent storm waiting in the wings, a two-faced wanderer of the westerlies dealing dreadful thunderstorms on its south side and freezing gales with drifting snow to its north. As storms approach, the day carries a hint of mildness, but the fading sun gives ground to a milky veil that would all too readily drop snow but for the want of a few degrees.
Through it all we mortals whose days are most surely numbered somehow yearn for them to pass ... so sweet the lure of prospective spring: its meadows splashed with gold, its captivating sunshine, its renewal of earthly life. The set changes each March, and the players follow different scripts, but it's really the same show. No matter how many times we see it in life, we're always ready for it again. For as much as March means memories of dark, chilly winter, it surely means brighter and better times are just ahead.
Some of the thunderstorms can become severe, with damaging wind and brief cloudbursts of rain. The greatest chance for locally severe storms should be in the "S" areas highlighted on this map (based on the NWS Storm Prediction Center's guidance).
There is a slight risk for severe thunderstorms later today from north-central Tennessee up across Indiana and Ohio to Michigan and eastern Wisconsin (shown by the "S" area on the map below. Thunderstorms are not predicted for areas near the coast from Delaware to New England.
It is not going to snow any time soon, but in any type of weather the flag is a symbol of freedom. This holiday weekend we celebrate the contributions of those who were there to defend the freedoms we enjoy in these times.
Once again, the rain will miss much of central and northern New England. The region has been in a dry spell, as evidenced by its appearance on this U.S Drought Monitor map.
A cold front crossed the Northeast yesterday. Looking at these maps, which show morning temperatures yesterday versus readings around the same time today, we can see that the biggest drop in temperatures occurred around the lower Great Lakes.
Much of eastern New England has been in a dry spell ever since the last snow melted. More dry weather is on the way from tomorrow through the end of the week. This radar image taken at mid-morning Tuesday is peppered with showers.