Around the world and for centuries, people have been forecasting the year's weather based on weather conditions in January. It might sound arbitrary, but the cabañuelistas who produce these monthly forecasts or cabañuelas in Spain regard it as an empirical science, and for many – especially farmers working the land in increasingly changeable times - any insight or prognosis is welcome, especially if it has been tried and tested since medieval days. Our resident cabañuelista, Andrés Rodríguez González, tells us what we can expect in October.
The Cabañuelas of my town, Garbayuela (in Siberia Extremeña) say that the drought we're suffering won't be alleviated in October. Around the first half of the month, we will have some rain but it won't abundant. During the first fortnight we will have frequent clouds that can cause very weak precipitation, At dawn and late in the day you will notice a drop in temperature, but in the middle of the day, temperatures will be higher than normal for this time of the year. The second fortnight will be clearer and marked by temperatures equal or higher than the first.
Although it's hardly mentioned, and no-one wants to cause alarm, we are experiencing real and dangerous persistent drought. In nearby towns such as Campillos, as well as in many villages in Sevilla and Cordoba, water vats are being supplied for home use. The water level in the local Zahara-El Gastor - reservoir, is very low. In fact no-one can remember ever seeing it this low, since it was built and filled with water.