In most places there are four fairly distinct seasons. In Oklahoma, the differences were quite pronounced, although the variation in temperatures in just one day of one season was often dramatic. Winter was generally cold, but temperatures could drip 30-40 degrees in just a few short hours.

Spring was/is also tornado season. Because Oklahoma sits pretty much in the dead center of the United States, this is where cold fronts crash into hot weather, spawning tornadoes. If it was windy and cloudy, we would go outside and look at the sky. Heavy, swirling, greenish clouds meant “head for the cellar.” This happened at least one time every spring.

After I had moved away from Oklahoma, my sister told me that when “Twister” was being filmed in Oklahoma, the crew came to my dad’s shop where she worked and bought light fixtures and other things. So, when I happened to fly in for a family visit, she said that the first local showing of “Twister” was that afternoon. We decided to go. Ironically, there was a tornado alert at the same time.

Summer was hot and hotter. Temperatures in some parts of the state could soar to the 100’s. When I was growing up, no one had air conditioning. Now air conditioning is pretty much everywhere, and people dash from building to cars to buildings.

Fall was uneventful except for the leaves falling; the colors were and still are best in the eastern part of the state. I moved to Hawaii for one year right after graduating from college. One year stretched to 61 and counting. Here was have fewer seasons, because we don’t get the temperatures swings that occur on a large continent. And, of course, we are closer to the equator. Temperatures most often range between 65-85.

Basically, there is a rainy season when it is cooler and generally occurs during winter months, although it can start as early as October or as late as January, and lasts for around three months. One year it rained for 42 days straight. Jokes about build an ark abounded.

The temperatures can drop into the 60’s in “winter,” and occasionally into the 50’s. When it gets in the 50’s, the lychee trees bloom and we are freezing. Most houses are single-wall construction, with jalousie windows (had to close completely). The coldest night since I’ve lived here was 53 F. It was hard to find enough clothes to stay warm.

Summers are now becoming hotter with global warming to the point of being quite unpleasant when the trade winds stop blowing. That is called Kona weather, because if there is any breeze at all, it comes from the direction of Kona on the Big Island and is very weak. I now have sun-blocking curtains on most windows, which can bring the temperature down by at least 5 degrees.

I stay here because the weather is still better than where I grew up, and we have no snakes. I just don’t like those critters.

Before you ask, I can’t tell when the best time is to visit Hawaii, and I don’t apologize for the weather if you don’t like when you get here.

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