There is a popular assumption that if you move to higher latitudes (toward poles) you can escape heat, and that by moving to lower latitudes (toward equator) you can escape cold.
The equation is simple. But is it real? If it was, then most northerly capital, Reykjavík, would also be coldest...at least until they establish a country on Antarctica. Yes, it appears that latitude is slacking off and failing to keep temperatures in line.
This was brought home to me when preparing for a radio interview in Dublin, Ireland. February had just roiled in and I was sitting back comfortably in my good old Ottawa, Canada weather, scraping icicles off my toes. I was giddy with excitement over our warm spell, which it was reaching a high of minus-5 (that's about 20-degrees American). I always ask questions day before an interview, to learn a bit about my audience, so I asked producer, "So what's weather forecast in Dublin?" asked.
"Oh it's horrible," she told me. "People are bracing for a deep winter freeze that's supposed to hit tonight. It might even get as cold as minus-5!"
This blew me away, that folks in Dublin would be worried about thermometer dips as low as ours spikes high. After all, isn't Dublin about same latitude as Ottawa?
Weather forecast from an atlas
I whipped out my trusty atlas. We live almost exactly on 45th parallel. If we lived exactly on it, we would have to share our bed with a cow and a dozen chickens across road – that's how close we are.
I turned pages to find Ireland. Could I have been mistaken? Is Dublin really quite south of us? No, it turns out that Dublin lies at 53rd parallel. Hey! They should be getting colder weather than us. That's not fair.