In Washington, only one thing might rival the fearsome psychic force of snow on the ground: snow in the forecast. And this weekend, when talk might have been of flowers and blossoms and baseball, the prospect of snow looms again.
It will be “rain or snow” here Tuesday, according to the latest prediction from the National Weather Service.
Certainly, there is precedent for it. Snow has fallen on every day in March at least once since official weather records began here in the late 19th century.
Curiously, the record for Tuesday’s date, March 25, is the least for any of the 31 days of the month, a mere 1.5 inches. By contrast in 1942, almost a foot fell two days before the end of the month.
But in many quarters, Washingtonians seem to sense that the area has put up this winter with more than its share of snow. Normal at Reagan National Airport is 15.3 inches. So far, almost twice as much — 30.3 inches — has fallen.
For many, the idea of any more seems — literally and figuratively — like piling on, and a bit unfair.
In the reckoning of the meteorological community, spring started a good while ago, on March 1
Astronomical spring, based on the position of the sun, began Thursday, with the vernal equinox, at 12:57 p.m. Schools have had many snow days. Daylight saving time is here.
The Ides of March have passed. Washington has celebrated St. Patrick’s Day.
Supplies of road salt have been drawn far down. Snow removal costs soared far beyond expectations.
Yet with all this, with the area weary of winter and yearning for sunshine and warmer weather, snow may still come.
It could come even though Friday’s high temperature was 57 degrees, about normal, and forecasters said Saturday could be 10 degrees higher.
According to the Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang blog, as of Friday evening, Tuesday was a “big question mark.” A storm seems to be coming. The particulars could not be stated with precision.
It might merely rain, the blog said, or the storm might graze us. But, the blog said, this, too, is possible: “a significant storm with accumulating snow.”