Sunday, September 20, 2009
The Santa Rosa storm arrives punctually in Buenos Aires - Parks are abandoned as the little summer is gone
From 5th September 2009
The skies opened up over Buenos Aires early Monday morning soaking the Argentine capital, and ending a week of scorching temperatures and soaring humidity.
The phenomenon known as La Tormenta de Santa Rosa (the Saint Rosa storm), that legend says unveils its fury thirty days either side of Saint Rosa day on August 30th, arrived right on time and brought winter flooding back to Buenos Aires.
The high summertime temperatures, which reached a maximum of thirty three degrees centigrade on Sunday afternoon, had been a welcome relief from the cold and dreary August winter. During the weekend, parks all over Buenos Aires were filled by capital city residents, known as porteños, as they scrambled to enjoy the sunshine during El veranito de San Juan (the little Saint John summer).
But much to the disdain of those enjoying the outdoors for the first time since winter began, el veranito de San Juan had to end soon and the warm sunshine was finally washed away by the Saint Rosa storm early Monday morning, with untypically Argentine punctuality. For the first time in twenty years, the storm hit on August 30th, Saint Rosa day exactly.
Any storm two weeks earlier and, as in other years, newspapers and television would have typically reported the early showing of the Saint Rosa storm. This year however has left no need for media spin to fill newspaper pages, as thunder and lighting hit at around four in the morning. The downpour continued to cause havoc for commuter traffic until midday on Monday. And though the severe hailstorm predicted by weather forecasters failed to hit the city, the River Plate has now faced an onslaught of wind and rain for five days straight.
Umbrellas are up, and puddles are rife throughout the city streets, as porteños now look forward to September 21st and the beginning of spring, when like last week, they can again sit outside to enjoy their afternoon coffee.