Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Under Yellow Skies

A few years ago, when I was working outside of the Madrid city limits, I was able to see the purple-brown colour of the pollution cloud hanging over the city; largely caused by the combination of heavy traffic together with periods of stable sunny weather. It is something that is not so visible when you are actually inside the city, and which is almost permanent in summer. Well yesterday the sky turned a slightly different colour; in addition to the normal July contamination we received a visit from a cloud of Saharan dust. Most of the devices measuring particles suspended in the air went over the recommended levels, and residents were being advised not do any strenuous exercise. Coupled with a temperature that reached close to 40 degrees in the city centre it seemed sensible advice to me – I’m taking it easy. Time for a thunderstorm.

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