Seasons and Weather
The year is divided into four seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter.
In spring nature awakens from her long winter sleep. The trees are filled with new life, the earth is warmed by the rays of the sun, and the weather gets gradually milder. The fields and the meadows are covered with fresh green grass. The woods and forests are filled with the songs of the birds. The sky is blue and cloudless. At night, millions of stars shine in the darkness.
When summer comes the weather gets warmer still and sometimes it's very hot. It's the farmer's busy season - he works in his fields from morning till night. The grass must be cut and the hay must be made, while the dry weather lasts. Sometimes the skies are overcast with heavy clouds. There are storms with thunder, lightning and hail.
Autumn brings with it the harvest-time, when the crops are gathered in and the fruit is picked in the orchards. The days get shorter and the nights longer. The woods turn yellow and brown, leaves begin to fall from the trees, and the ground is covered with them. The skies are grey, and very often it rains.
When winter comes, we're obliged to spend more time indoors because out-of-doors it's cold. We may get fog, sleet and frost. Ponds, lakes, rivers and streams are frozen, and the roads are sometimes covered with slippery ice or deep snow. The trees are bare. Bitter north winds have stripped them of all their leaves.
The naughtiest thing in the world is the weather. It's like a capricious woman who always does the opposite to what you ask her.
When you want to go for a picnic in the open air you ask the skies to remain clear and the day to be fine. Nervously you switch on the radio and listen to the weather forecast. You tremble with joy to hear that it'll stay warm and dry with bright sunshine, and moderate breeze. Your imagination draws a hot summer afternoon and yourself saying: 'Nice weather we are having today!' You take a lot of food and no warm clothes, go to the countryside but... do not get anything sunny.
You get it cloudy and cool with intermittent drizzle which ends with a thundery shower. The sky is so heavily cast with clouds, the downpours follow one another with such frequency, the rumbling of thunder and flashes of lightning are so frightening that you've got no illusions left. You throw away the food and go back hungry and angry. And when you are already approaching your home soaked to the skin it suddenly brightens up. Oh, Goodness!
Each summer every student survives through the best time of his or her life — an examination session. Then many students plead: 'Please, weather, stay cloudy, chilly or even cold with brisk northerly wind and nun torrents leaving pools and peddles everywhere, especially on the playground. And I'll be a good student'. The radio promises: 'Patchy light drizzle with showery outbreaks of rain.' But the "patch" is never in the right place. Instead the skies send heat and excellent weather for a sun tan. Everyone knows that sun tan never helps at exams.
And it is always like this. When you go skiing and want to have frosty weather with a lot of snow, it starts thawing and your skis sink in the slush. Instead of a snowfall and hoarfrost on the trees you get excellent sleet. The weather does not feel any pangs of remorse.
When you go in the car to the country, enjoying nice weather and a beautiful view of a rainbow in the blue sky, you pay no attention to some haze on the horizon. Some time later a thin mist in the distance turns into a thick fog and you spend a lovely two hours instead of one at the steering wheel.
When you plant some much-cared-for flowers in the garden, either a ground frost or a hail storm kills them. Digging muddy flowerbeds one feels exasperated: 'What beastly weather we've had this week! And it keeps nasty! Wretched!'
To tell the troth, sometimes the weather is ashamed and turns for the better. But not always. More often it sticks to its own pattern and after a short warm spell turns bad again. Why is it always like this? Maybe, because the weather likes surprises and wants to bring in adventures to our life, breaking the boring routine with marvellous happenings?
1. Do you agree that the weather is like a capricious woman? Prove your point.
2. Say what weather you like best of all and why.
BRITAIN FOR ALL SEASONS
The real Britain is a land of unspoilt beauty, where the mood and rhythm of the countryside changes from one region to another, and from season to season.
Summer is the season of long, long days, when a variety of pastimes and pursuits can be enjoyed. The beach is a favourite place to relax and the more active will find an exciting range of water sports in Britain, from gentle sailing to the action-packed sport of jet-skiing. The warm summer months are an ideal time to enjoy the delights of eating outside, a stroll of peaceful rural surroundings or a leisurely round of golf. Make the most of the fresh air by cycling along pretty country lanes or by taking a boat trip on one of Britain’s many rivers, canals and lakes. Or for the more daring, how about taking a balloon trip and enjoying the view of the countryside from the air. There are so many attractions to choose from in the summer months - from pageant and tradition to a host of arts festivals.
In autumn the British landscape assumes a breathtaking beauty and it is a perfect time of the year for outdoor activities such as walking, golfing and cycling. The game shooting season is also in full swing and many hotels can arrange for you to participate.
As the days become cooler you may prefer to make the most of the varied entertainment provided by Britain’s towns and cities. Enjoy a visit to the cinema, theatre or perhaps a classical concert.
In rural communities, autumn is the time to gather in the crops. Take a peek inside some of Britain’s churches and cathedrals, which will be decorated with flowers and fruit for the harvest festival. Fireworks and bonfires will illuminate the sky during the evening of November. This is to commemorate the unsuccessful attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament by Guy Fawkes in 1605.
Winter heralds the season of Christmas festivities. Towns and cities countrywide are brightly decorated for the occasion. Shopping is always a delight at this time of the year, when the shops are full of fascinating Christmas goods and window displays of large department stores will delight all ages. You will also find many indoor shopping complexes around the country, which make looking for gifts a real pleasure whatever the temperature outside. After Christmas is the season of annual sales when both travel and shopping bargains are to be found.
Britain has a vast array of museums and galleries countrywide, and winter is an excellent time to see them when the flock of summer visitors has dispersed. Many stately homes also remain open throughout the year.
Springtime sees the countryside bloom and radiate with life. Daffodils, bluebells and primroses can be seen on hillsides and in the fields everywhere. The brightest warmer days see the return of many birds who migrated during the winter and the woodlands and meadows come alive with their songs. It is one of the loveliest times of the year to visit Britain and appreciate the outstanding countryside.
Riding is an exhilarating pastime to enjoy in the spring months and keen fishermen will find some of the world’s game fishing rivers in Britain.
Complete the following chart about the weather of your region.
Describe the weather where you live in different seasons.
ABOUT THE WEATHER
This, I suppose, is a typical winter's day. The streets are covered with snow. The air is clear and cold. Certainly, we never see anything like this in Cuba, where I come from.
Perhaps such a scene is typical for some sections of the United States but not for New York City. The streets won't stay this way for very long. As always in New York, the temperature will probably change within a few hours; the snow will melt and then the streets will be covered instead with mud and slush — not a very pretty signt.
How often does it snow like this during the winter in New York?
Generally about three or four times. Usually they are all light snowfalls of an inch or two. Sometimes the snow barely covers the ground, and often during a snowstorm the snow will change to rain and wash away by itself in a few hours.
But I have read various times in the newspapers about heavy snowfalls in New York. There are photographs of certain parts of the city completely blanketed in snow.
Perhaps once in every four or five years we have a heavy snow storm or blizzard, but such storms are the exception rather than the rule. Temperatures in New York during the real winter months of January and February range between 25 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and that is not cold enough for snow. One has to go up into the mountains or farther north to find real snow. In such sections there is snow on the ground from the beginning of winter until the spring
thaws come. Then the snow gradually melts and disappears.
The changes of season and weather are very interesting. In the United States one can find every type of climate and weather. In Cuba, of course, the weather changes very little. We have only two seasons, summer and winter, with a difference in temperature of only 15 or 20 degrees.
One does not have to go out of New York City to find examples of every type of climate. The changes that occur in the weather here are often as sudden as they are unpleasant. A change of temperature of forty degrees within a single day is not uncommon.
But you have said that winter temperatures do not go very low in New York.
Normally winter temperatures here range between 25 and 40 degrees, but that does not mean that they do not go lower. Sometimes we have temperatures below zero. Thus there are times during a snowstorm when the temperature will suddenly drop and the snow will change to sleet and hail. Again the snow may begin to melt normally but the temperature drops, and before the streets can be cleaned, the water has all changed to ice. Then it is almost impossible to drive or walk. Cars are sliding all over the streets. People slip and fall everywhere on the sidewalks.
That sounds like a lot of fun.
It's not very funny when you slip and fall on the ice. You go down suddenly and there is no way of catching yourself.
I want to take some photographs of myself standing in the snow in Central Park. I want to send them home to my friends in Cuba. Most of them have never seen snow.
In New York one enjoys of suffers all kinds of climate. In the spring it rains frequently, and there is a great deal of wind. In summer the heat becomes sometimes almost unbearable. It is a heavy, humid heat that is almost suffocating. New York, because of its proximity to the ocean, is quite humid. This same humidity also makes many winter days unpleasant because the air, instead of being dry and brisk, is damp and penetrating. The cold seems to go right into one's bones.
I suppose that there is nothing much one can do about the weather here except to accept it philosophically. New York is such a wonderful place otherwise.
Most New Yorkers love their city and accept such minor inconveniences. But it is even difficult to dress properly for such weather. If you dress in heavy clothes in the morning, the weather may turn hot suddenly. If you dress lightly because the morning seems warm, the temperature drops and by night you are shivering with cold. Yet New Yorkers learn even to joke about such things. To any visitor to the city who complains about the weather, they say, "If you don't like our weather, wait a minute. It will change." They also say that
no woman is permitted to work in the office of the local weather bureau because the weather is changeable enough as it is.
The streets won't stay this way for very long. — Улицы не будут долго оставаться такими.
change to rain and wash away by itself in a few hours — снег перейдет в дождь и смоется через несколько часов
completely blanketed in snow — полностью укутан снегом
once in every four or five years — раз в четыре или пять лет
the exception rather than the rule — исключение, а не правило
range — колеблется
often as sudden as they are unpleasant — они часто также внезапны как и неприятны
within a single day — в течение одного дня
do not go very low — не падает очень низко
the water has all changed to ice — вода превратилась в лед
there is no way of catching yourself— нет способа удержаться
a great deal of wind — ветрено
because of its proximity to the ocean — из-за своей близости к океану
cold seems to go right into one's bones. — кажется холод пронизывает до костей
is nothing much one can do about the weather — ничего нельзя поделать с погодой
may turn hot — может стать жаркой
you are shivering with cold — дрожжите от холода
complains about the weather — жалуется на погоду
Answer the questions:
Between what two persons does the above dialogue take place?
From what country does Juan come?
What kind of climate, does Cuba have?
Does Juan say that in Cuba there are four seasons in the year or two seasons?
Which system of measuring temperature is used in Cuba and in South America: Farhenheit or Centigrade?
What system is used in the United States?
In the Farhenheit system, at what temperature does the water boil?
In what city does the above dialogue take place?
Does it snow seldom or often in winter in New York City?
What is the average range of temperature in New York City during the winter months of January and February?
On what date does spring officially begin?
Why does the heat in New York City in the summer sometimes become suffocating?
Why is it difficult in New York City to dress properly for the weather?
What do New Yorkers say jokingly to any visitor who complains about the weather?
Do you listen to the weather forecasts? Do you trust them? Have you heard the weather forecast for today? Was it right?
Below you see examples of several weather forecasts from English newspapers. Read and translate them.
I. General situation: Many eastern coastal areas of England will; stay cloudy and cool, with patchy light drizzle during the morning. Western parts of Wales and south-west England will be cloudy with showery outbreaks of rain, although western Wales will brighten up during the afternoon. The rest of England and Wales will stay warm and dry with hazy sunshine, although there will be a brisk easterly breeze. Showery rain over Northern Ireland will clear during the afternoon. Scotland will be dry with sunny periods, but eastern coasts will be cloudy and western areas may have rain during the morning.
II. Cloud and outbreaks of rain over England and Wales will clear during the morning. The afternoon will be mostly dry with bright or sunny spells, although wintry showers will develop at times in the north and north-west. Scotland and Northern Ireland will have another cold day with sunshine and blustery showers expected. The showers will be heavy in places and falling as snow over the high ground.
Outlook: Bright with wintry showers at times, especially in the north. Rain spreading eastwards on Monday.
III. Forecast: A dry, sunny start over England and Wales, but there may be light showers adjacent to the southern North Sea. Western Scotland and Northern Ireland will become cloudy during the morning with outbreaks of rain moving to these areas by midday. This weather will spread south-eastwards to all parts of Scotland, north-west England and north Wales by the evening. Temperatures: 8 C° (46 F°) in East Anglia, 10 C° (50 F°) in Northern Ireland.
Outlook: Little change in southern and eastern parts of England during Tuesday and Wednesday. There will be cool nights with frost and possibly patchy fog, but day with sunny spells during daylight hours. Early cloud and rain in north-western districts will gradually die out during Tuesday.
IV. Weather: England and Wales will start cloudy with outbreaks of rain. However, brighter, showery weather already over Scotland and Northern Ireland will slowly spread south and east throughout the day. The showers will be heaviest and most frequent in the north, falling as sleet or snow over hills and mountains, with drifting occurring in places. It will feel cold in the blustery and strong westerly wind.
Outlook: Sunny intervals and showers are expected. Feeling colder than of late in the north-westerly wind.
Match the Russian phrases from list A with their English equivalents from list B.
Местами дожди/туман; ожидается сухая тёплая погода; на востоке области пройдут сильные проливные дожди; на почве возможны заморозки; ветер северный, умеренный, 10—15 м/сек; в дальнейшем холодный характер погоды сохранится; облачная, дождливая погода; к концу недели погода изменится.
The showers will be heavy in the East; we are in for a warm dry spell; moderate northerly wind, 1—15 metres per second; a change in the weather by the end of the week; patchy rain/fog; the weather will stay cold; ground frosts are possible; cloudy and wet.
Make up your own weather forecast for the next day.
Look at the following patterns, expressing one's delight with the weather or dislike of it. Use these patterns to respond to the following.For good weather
For bad weather
It's absolutely marvellous!
It certainly is horrible.
Isn't it gorgeous!
Nasty day, isn't it?
It's so nice and hot!
Isn't it dreadful?
Personally I think it's so nice when it's hot, isn't it?
I hate rain.
I adore it. Don't you?
I don't like it at all. Do you?
Nice day, isn't it?
What a glorious morning!
Fancy such a day in December!
It's so nice when it's warm.
What a beautiful winter evening!
This breeze is so refreshing!
It's so surprisingly warm for this time of the year!
What a fine day we are having!
I love the sun. Isn't it wonderful?
Dull morning, isn't it?
Nasty day, isn't it?
I hate snow.
What a horrible day!
The heat is unbearable.
I can't stand this wind.
The weather is turning bad.
Rain all day long. Isn't it dreadful?
It's pouring again. Isn't it wretched?
Discuss with a partner the weather you are having at present. Choose questions and answers from the models given below.Questions:
What do you think of the weather?
What's the weather outside?
I wonder what the weather is going to be like.
Will the weather keep?
Do you think it will clear up?
Do you think it is going to turn out fine?
What is the weather forecast for today?
We are in for a spell of good weather.
It looks like rain.
The weather is turning bad.
It'll change for the better.
The weather is fine/nice/lovely/beautiful.
The weather is nasty/wretched/awful/dull.
The day is rainy/windy/bright/sunny.
The weather is favourable.
The sky is overcast/cloudy/clear.
The wind is rising.
It has been raining on and off for ...
The fog is lifting.
Say what mood in you prevails when
1) it is a cold winter day;
2) it is a hot summer night;
3) it is a warm spring evening;
4) it is a cool autumn morning.
Think for five minutes and write what you like to do in good and bad weather.
Fill in the gaps in the sentences below-with one of the following idioms:
to catch the wind with a net, not to have the foggiest idea, to chase rainbows, a bit of blue sky, to be snowed under, to be on cloud nine, a storm in a tea cup, thunderous applause, to save for a rainy day, under the weather, to snowball, out of season.
1. When the audience like a performance, they show it with...
2. When you feel that you'll never finish your work, you're ...
3. When you are completely in the dark about something, you ...
4. When a project gets bigger and bigger, it...
5. When you are ecstatically happy, you are ...
6. When you feel unwell, you say that you are ...
7. When you pursue illusory goals or hopes, you ...
8. When you get yourself busy with a useless thing, you ...
9. When you lay up money for the future, you ...
10. When something is absolutely out of place, it is ...
11. When somebody gets some hope at last, he or she gets …
12. When there is a lot of fuss about a small mishap, it is ...
"Office Gossip after the Summer Vacation"
Setting: The offices of the famous international corporation "Rich People Banks".
Situation: The first working day after a summer vacation. Lunch time. The people speak about their tours to different places during their leaves. They mainly speak about the weather.
Mr Merryweather, the boss's assistant. He stayed with his wife in a hotel on the Canary Islands for three weeks. The weather was very nice.
Cleopatra, the secretary of the boss. She went hiking to the Pennine Mountains in Great Britain. The weather was changeable.
Nina and Tina, two typists. They went together to a youth camp in France. The weather was warm and sunny.
Ted and Ned, two computer programmers. They went fishing to the lakes of Norway. The weather was rainy.
Mrs Ames, a clerk. She went to the US to visit her relatives in California. It was very hot.
Mrs James, a clerk. She went to Canada with her husband to some sports events. The weather was cool, but they liked it.
Mr Flames, an accountant. He was unlucky not to have had a leave, but to have gone on business to Alaska. It was rather cold there.
Mr. Blames, a business manager. He went travelling to China. It was hot but rainy.
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