Whitesburg KY
Mostly cloudy
Mostly cloudy

Rain better than snow

It was bad enough, I thought, when I found myself mowing grass on Black Friday while most everybody else was out fighting to get in line for those $99 big screen TVs that had been gone since well before daybreak.

Now I find myself, on the first Monday after Christmas, hoping the rain will stop long enough for the yard to drain so that I’ll be able to get enough traction to mow the grass in December. I’m reasonably sure that I had never before mown my yard in November. I know for a matter of fact I’ve never had to mow it in December.

But it’s darn near a haveto case because I just walked to the mailbox between downpours and my feet, socks and shoes are wet to way up on my ankles from tromping through grass that took advantage of Christmas summer to put out several inches of new growth that we don’t normally see between Halloween and Easter.

I have not checked the stats, but it sure feels to me like December was warmer overall, than October.

My dad used to say that an inch of rain could have been a foot of snow if had been a little colder. A bit of Internet research indicates that the snow-to-rain conversion ratio is not quite that simple.

Points East

The colder the temperature, the more snow it takes to make an inch of rain, according to information I found from several Internet sources which I almost never believe until I find one that agrees with my point of view. And usually, no matter how ridiculous and profound your argument is, you can find an Internet source that agrees with you.

But that’s really another subject for another time.

In the meantime, after an hour or so of research, I am content to believe that most of the time when it snows in Kentucky, it takes somewhere between eight and 14 inches of snow to equal an inch of rain. I do know for an absolute fact that we have had just over three inches of rain in Paint Lick in December that could have been 40 and 60 inches of snow. It doesn’t matter much to me that the ratio may be somewhat imprecise, that is still a helluva lot more snow than I want to contend with.

Between December 23 and the end of Christmas Day, my rain gauge measured just over 1.5 inches of new rainfall. Lowell Branch, in front of my house, is usually a tiny trickle this time of year, but it was roaring like a whitewater kayaking river on Christmas Day.

One of my grandsons told me he wished it would stop raining and I told him, like my dad used to tell me, that he’d better be glad it was raining because all that rain could have been snow.

“But I want it to snow!” he exclaimed.

“But you wouldn’t have been able to get to my house for Christmas,” I told him.

“Nahhhhhh,” he said, “We’da rode my dad’s truck cause snow can’t stop it.”

Still, on this last Monday of December afternoon, the outside temperature is hovering near 60 and we are still under a flashflood watch until tomorrow morning.

My mom used to say that if it thundered in February it would frost in May.

To the best of my knowledge, she had no dire predictions for the thunder in December that woke me up at 5 a.m. this morning.

So, let it rain, I say. I am ever so glad it isn’t snow. I just wish it would slow down long enough to let me get the yard mowed.

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