Whether weather

2008 Olympic Regatta - Qingdao - Day 6 - in fog
After a day spent looking at the grizzly murk and the flags around the concourse hanging limp and damp, the racing on all courses was abandoned and reserve days came into play so that on the seventh day of the regatta the organisers will be praying for wind as all 11 classes are slated to race, bringing all five courses into action.

Weather predictions are never certain and in Qingdao must be taken with a pinch of salt and the Qingdao conversion factor applied, what is officially given as eight knots is closer to four to five. But even the Predictwind website that shows the US and Canadian forecasts for this area are in major disagreement about this Friday.

PredictWind - Graphic showing expected wind strength and direction at 40metres for Friday 15 August at 1500hrs for Qingdao

If the Canadian forecasters are to be believed, there will be a veritable storm in the morning, peaking at 35 knots in the early morning, but this 'spike' on the graph is highly suspect.

The Americans, however, suggest that 18 knots is possible at noon, but like the Canadian predictions these are for 40 metres up and a factor of 53% must be applied to bring that down to mast height. That would reduce the noon figure to around ten knots.

That would be far more than at any other time during the regatta and an answer to the organisers’ prayers, a state of affairs that could easily continue for the next three days.

That could be right on the changeover point for the Tornado gennaker choice – lighter favouring the upwind Code Zero sails, and the higher numbers the more conventional, larger downwind sails.

Whatever materialises, it must be better than Grey Thursday and perhaps the best comment on this state-of-affairs comes from the sailors’ balladeer, Jimmy Buffett: 'The weather is here, I wish you were beautiful!'

And in case you have forgotten - from the 1981 album Coconut Telegraph:

He worked hard all year just wanted a few weeks alone
But his old lady's into modeling,
She can't stay away from the phone.
Besides she bitches about the mosquitoes
She says 'Down there there is nothing to do'
Her goddamn phone never stops ringing,
He'll try the service in a day maybe two.

Well, he's on his third drink before the
wheels of the plane leave the ground,
Making points with the stewardess
climbing over Long Island Sound.
She's also spending some time on the island,
Too much city madness gives her the blues.
They make a date to go dancing and dining,
Seems neither has that much to lose.

The weather is here, I wish you were beautiful,
My thoughts aren't too clear but don't run away.
My girlfriend's a bore, my job is too dutiful,
Hell, nobody's perfect - would you like to play?
I feel together today...

Well now that was just the start
Of a well-deserved over due binge.
Meanwhile back in the city certain
people are starting to cringe.
His lawyers are calling his parents,
His girlfriend doesn't know what to think,
His partners are studying their options,
He's just singing and ordering drinks.

The weather is here I wish you were beautiful,
The skies are too clear life's easy today.
The beer is too cold, the daiquiri's too fruitful,
There's no place like home when it's this far away.
I don't care what they say...

He's going back to New York to pack it up
and let everyone know.
It was something that he should have done
such a long time ago.
Still time to start a new life in the palm trees,
Billy Clyde wasn't insane.
And it doesn't work out there'll never be any doubt
That the pleasure was worth all the pain.

The weather is here, I wish you were beautiful,
The skies are too clear, life is easy today.
The beer is too cold, the daiquiri's too fruitful,
There's no place like home when it's this far away.
I need time for to play,
Time for to play...