First it was Sharktopus! Then Sharknado! Now (cue dramatic music) Saharan Dust!
“Strong storms in north Africa have sent large amounts of Sahara Desert dust into the upper atmosphere. That dust is then carried westward across the Atlantic Ocean eventually landing here in Texas.
The heavy dust has blanketed the city, complicating hot temperatures with air quality problems. The dust can be irritating to sensitive groups like the elderly and those with asthma.” (courtesy of KTRH News)
Houston – we have a problem! Our air matches the water in Galveston! That’s brown for those who don’t live here. Meteorologists are talking about how very cool this phenomenon is – picking up storm dust from Africa and moving it all the way over here to dump it on Texas.
Cool isn’t the descriptive to use when this dirt-blanket is causing our already smoldering August temps to climb – a heat index of 109-110 is warm even for us natives.
This stuff is not for the highly allergic. Saharan Dust mocks OTC allergy remedies. Want to try some prescription Nasonex – known to combat over 100 different allergens? Not Saharan Dust! (insert victorious evil laugh here!) What about those who claim they don’t have allergens? Guess what – you do now! Watery eyes, blocked ears, the sniffling and constant throat clearing coming from your cubicle neighbors – all compliments of Saharan Dust!
Smoggy brown air, increased heat index, horrible allergies – what else can it bring? I’m so glad you asked! In addition to a permanent layer of dust on your car, Saharan Dust is often the precursor to increased tropical storm activity. It’s August and things have been quiet on the hurricane charts – keep all appendages crossed it stays that way because as anyone on the Gulf Coast can tell you – it only takes one to rearrange your world.
Do you think the guys at Sci-Fi are working on the script for Saharan Dust – Invaders from Africa yet? Maybe it could have sand-sharks and some link to Martian dust thrown in for better ratings. Hmm…the sand sharks where off the coast of Africa when a Martian meteor hits – it contaminates them with strange Martian dust, giving them amazing speed and stamina. The Saharan Dust spawns a tropical storm headed towards the US and the sharks get caught up in it and swim across the Atlantic. The storm becomes a hurricane and mutant Martian sand sharks are raining down across the Gulf Coast. Can Boudreaux and his pet alligators Rita and Ike, save the day using only a 12 gauge and an airboat? Stay tuned to find out!
In the mean time, keep washing away the dust, keep the kleenex and eye drops handy, and pray for a good cleansing rain.