Saturday, December 24, 2016

Snow in the Sahara

Unbelievable!  Sahara is  the hottest, driest place on the planet. The last thing one would expect is snow. That's a rare weather event ( the last time snow fell there was in 1979 -  it was first time in recorded weather history ), and therefore this is real, exciting news.

An amateur photographer by the name of Karim Bouchetata captured the snow on the red sand dunes (photo above) near the little algerian desert  town Ain Sefra, known as the Gateway to the desert . He had to do it quickly as the snow stayed only for about a day and then melted away (19 of December,2016).

There are some youtube videos about this Ain Sefra place in Algeria - an oasis located in the desert and near the Atlas mountains (see, for example, the video "Algerie,  cote d'Ain Sefra- Paysages").

The snow in the Sahara desert is one of the many occurrences of weather anomality  during the last two decades, which makes us wonder where do we go from here . What's going to happen next with our climate? We're quite helpless about it.  I don't call the situation warming  or cooling of the earth - it would be erroneous -  just  anomality of the weather.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

The Roof Of The World

"I must visit Nepal someday", I keep saying to myself.
My interest in Nepal began not through its Himalaya mountains with the Everest peak (the roof of the world). It started actually with a pair of... handknit thick woolen socks that warm my feet and my heart during winter.

thick socks for indoors

Wool is considered a magical material and the best insulating one, as it both absorbs and repels water, moisture (merino wool is the best on the market). I suppose the nepalese socks are designed to help survive the Himalayan winters, but they're ideal for any kind of winter, harsh as well as moderate. For those allergic to wool there are all sorts of acrylic fibers, but none can compete with wool. With these socks in winter, I really feel on the top of the world.
white/grey/black, thinner socks for outdoors

I also have a pair of leg warmers, 2 pairs of hand mittens, and 2  hats of the same origin - Nepal villages.. I use them much less frequently than the socks as we have short, relatively moderate winters.

leg warmers

hand mittens

hats with ear flaps and lined with fleece

People that buy the handknit woolen items, help underprivileged women in the rural part of Nepal that earn their living from hand knitting crafts.The 100% woolen items come in a variety of designs, sizes and colors.

There used to be a shop in Tel Aviv which imported woolen products from Nepal, but it closed a few years ago. After all we are a warm country. Since then, however, the winters have become quite cold, and if you happen to have those Nepal woolen items, you're on 'the roof of the world'.