Climatic quirk upsets seasonal balance

Dhaka,  Mon,  29 May 2017
Published : 17 Mar 2017, 19:59:23
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A CLOSE LOOK

Climatic quirk upsets seasonal balance

Nilratan Halder
It is impossible to remember when people in this part of the world confronted such seasonal quirks. First, there was almost no winter in most part of the country. Then the advent of spring could not be complete before summer peeped in. Again, at a time when the two were playing hide-and-seek, the rainy season seems to be setting. It is indeed unusual to have a sustained overcast sky for days together followed by heavy rains. So, in effect, three seasons are competing with each other right now to the surprise of the people here.

That global warming has made weather eccentric all over the world is known. The familiar pattern of weather in most parts of the world has been disrupted. Strange developments are taking place in the cycle of Nature. Now scientists have warned that there is brewing what is called a sky river with enormous quantity of water gathering in it. If the heavenly river gives in suddenly, the cascading waterfall will wash away everything on its way. In other words, there will be floods of unprecedented order.

As long as this does not happen, the interpolation of one season within another or between two others however has not caused any suffering to the majority of people of Bangladesh. Only a short-lived cold wave in the country's north caused some genuine problems. Otherwise, the weather is pleasant now except for a little high temperature during the midday for a few days. Yet, it should be admitted that heat has not been unbearable yet. It is not energy-sapping.

With the rain coming early, the heat has been driven out. More importantly, in a city like Dhaka where dust swirls like ruthless gangs of bandits whenever wind blows, the rains have come as a blessing. Maybe, in some pockets, the perennial problems of water-logging have by now started taking its toll. Overall, though, the effect is likely to be welcome by the country's people. Farmers in particular will be delighted to see that the rains have acted as irrigation without wanting.

But lo, it would be too early to get elated with the advent of the rainy season. After all, the early sign is not without some danger inherent in it. If the spring does not have a chance and so does the summer, the likely scenario is of a country floating on water. Given the scientists' warning, who knows where the sky river will break loose. For a country like Bangladesh it will be too much.

Suppose, floods make their visitation earlier than the monsoon, what will happen to the boro harvest? Bangla months Chaitra and Baishakh are the harvesting season and if the rainy season decides to show up during this period, there will be extensive crop losses to farmers. This is certainly not a good prospect for a country that has just started to produce enough food grains to feed its people and leave a small quantity of surplus.

A dark premonition like this surely makes the mood sour. Without such a thought at the back of the mind, however, there is every reason to celebrate the weather now. It is moderate and helps preserve people's energy. The clarity of the spring with the sweet melody of its harbinger cuckoo is missing, no doubt. Krishnachura, palash and shimul flowers run riot of colours this time. This year too they have been presenting their richness and the rains will lend them depth on a different level.

The number of the birds cooing so sweetly has definitely declined. Or else, their call would be heard almost everywhere. Now one has to visit Ramna Park or Chandrima Udyan to hear the soulful song of this romantic bird.

Without the cuckoo, the spring is incomplete. But the way weather pattern is changing so capriciously, there is no knowing if there will be any room for the spring in the cycle of seasons. Whatever happens, without the spring life will be dull and drab. This is the time when life gets its nourishment from Nature's mysterious reserve.
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