We are the Marincas-Bucy Family, Gregg (Daddy), Marlyn (Mama), Alex John (4.5 years old), and Gregorie Ann (3 years old). This blog will be the story of our 6 months spent traveling through Mexico and Central America. Please read along to follow us on our adventures, to find information about planning your own adventure, to get hints and ideas on traveling with small children, or to just daydream.
[Alex is now 7 and Gregorie is 5.5 , and our six months were spent. We are still reliving our adventures every day. And sharing them here. And dreaming of more... always dreaming...]

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Endless Summer

We live in Southern California -- legendary land of the Endless Summer.  But the legend is not really accurate -- we DO have seasons.  Maybe not the way Minnesotans do, but our own kind of seasons.  Right now, in mid September, the days are a little cooler than a month ago, and the nights are MUCH cooler.  This cooling down will continue for another month/month and a half.  And then the weirdest SoCal weather phenomenon will happen -- the Santa Anas will blow.  Very hot and very dry, they will blow up to over 100 MPH.  Humidity will be in the single digits.  As these arid winds blow across land parched from 6 months without rain  they will sweep dust and fire into the LA Basin from the inland high desert.  Then the wind will stop, and the fog will come, and the land will cool, and then:  RAIN!  Rain may come.  Southern California's winter is really it's rainy season -- the temperatures are cooler (and here in the depths of the canyon where we live, overnights are usually below freezing -- pretty cold for LA!) -- but the biggest change is the glorious possibility of rain.  The rainy season runs from mid November to mid May.  And, unlike rainy seasons in Southeast Asia or Central America, it does not mean that it will rain every day or every other day or even once a week.  It just means it could rain.  The year Alex was born it actually rained for 2 solid weeks.  But usually it will rain for a day or two, and then not for a few weeks.  

Spring comes to Southern California in February.  The deciduous trees leaf out and the flowers bloom.  The rain makes the world green again -- as a NJ native I am ever amazed by how summer here is brown and winter is green -- backwards of the East Coast!  By the time the rain stops for the final time in this earth-sun cycle in mid May, summer is on its way.  The days get warmer and warmer.  And the nights too.   And then, another SoCal phenomenon happens -- June Gloom.  A thick marine layer blows in and brings morning fog and all day haze.  The temperatures drop a little.  We wear sweaters!  Then the winds change again and July and August sizzle!  Crystal clear blue skies every day.  Temperatures reach into the 90's across the land and well into the 100's in the Valley.  The beaches stay a little cooler but often see 90's too.  The sun sets into the Big Blue as a sparkling yellow ball -- no pink and purple steaks because there are no clouds.  

And then by mid-September things start to cool off again, slowly, and the cycle begins again.

So here we are, poised on that change of season, about to head south for a truly Endless Summer.  As we get into Central America, we will be entering the dry season there.  The Panamanians consider December and January to be "summer" despite being in the Northern Hemisphere.  That is because for them too, the seasons are more about rain, and no rain, than temperature or the angle of the sun.  Previously I spent several July/August weeks in Panama -- oh, the rain!  I have never seen so much rain!  But not this time!  I hope though that we will feel, see, and smell rain sometime in the next 6 months -- we will be in lot of rainforests!

Here are some images from a late summer day here at our hometown beach:

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