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Trusting weather experts
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Climate experts have all sorts of explanations each year about how much rain we have or have not received.

It’s either global warming or some system in the tropics that gets the most blame or credit for our weather.

I am not a climatologist, meteorologist or any other kind of weather scientist, but I am appreciative to the good Lord for the amount of rain we have received. Several times in recent weeks, I have been in our state’s farm belt and have seen the signs of plentiful rain.

One crop that is uniquely ours, the Vidalia onion, will officially begin its marketing season this week. The onions are displaying beautiful green tops and, from all indications, it is going to be a bountiful harvest.

As farmers begin planting other row crops, the fields look exceptionally good. Unlike recent years, the fields ready for plowing do not have the consistency of concrete.

The weather has been a topic of conversation forever. I’m sure cave dwellers made some kind of utterance indicating it was cold, hot or raining. Some of the most memorable verses in the Bible — those dealing with the birth and crucifixion of Jesus — include a description of the sky. Essentially, a weather report.

The conversation this season has generally been encouraging. There are people who grouse about the rain, but you can’t argue about the results.

Many enterprises are dependent on the weather. I took our vehicle to the car wash the other day and cars were lined up, waiting to get in. I was happy for the car wash owner, because many days this winter his doors were closed because of the weather.

Perhaps the most encouraging weather news this season is the winter rain has brought our lakes and rivers to the levels we think of as normal. I enjoy driving to Lake Lanier and actually seeing Lake Lanier, not some sandy trace of where the lake used to be.

In the places we have grass, it is growing well. I found a dry spell and put out some weed killer and it really worked. Now, I’m trying to get some grass growing, albeit a little late in the season.

I’m hopeful the good weather we have enjoyed continues through the spring and summer. I hate to think of what would happen if the rain tap shuts off just as the warmth of summer kicks in.

However, we have survived the drought conditions before and we would do it again.

It’s interesting how all the gurus start predicting what may or may not happen. First, they will tell us what’s going to happen in the next 90 days. I’m sure there is science behind it, but it sure does seem like they miss the mark rather often.

Then, when it gets to the three-, five- or seven-day forecast, the guys with the storm tracking Doppler live action eyewitness radar that can tell you if it is raining on your street, will try to determine if it will rain tomorrow.

I’ll listen, but I’ll pack my umbrella anyway.

Harris Blackwood is a Gainesville resident whose columns appear on the Sunday Life page and on

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