1997 Mallorca Trip Report

Chuck Doswell

(done while affiliated with the National Severe Storms Laboratory)

Last update: 01 October 2004: minor revisions

This contains an informal trip report ... as such, it is purely informal and does not reflect anyone's views and opinions but my own. Let me know at doswell@nssl.noaa.gov if you have any problems with its content.

During my 95/96 visit to Mallorca, I was invited to be on the Programme Committe for a Symposium on Mediterranean Cyclones and Hazardous Weather, to be held in April of 1997. In agreeing to serve on this committee, I was also thinking of it as an opportunity to re-establish my collaboration with my colleagues at UIB and the INM (the Spanish equivalent of the NWS). Therefore, the trip was arranged such that it would include time both before and after the Symposium for continuing the work begun on my previous trip.

This report includes a summary of my personal observations of the Symposium, and also some comments concerning the visit as a whole. This time, it was possible for my wife to accompany me on the trip, which she was excited about doing after visiting me for two weeks during my last trip to Mallorca.

The flight over was the usual mess of dealing with airports and their hassles, but nothing particularly disturbing happened until we got to Palma. Then we found our luggage had missed the connection in Barcelona. Fortunately, it arrived the next day ... we were led to believe that it could be delivered to our place of residence while in Mallorca (Santa Ponsa, to the southwest of Palma but with easy access to both Palma and UIB), but it turned out we had to go to the airport to pick it up ... customs (aduana), of course.

My interactions with my UIB and INM colleagues kept us busy getting ready for the Symposium, but the arrangements for our stay worked out very well. I had a rental vehicle and the island is sufficiently small that I remembered pretty well how to get around. My espanol had not improved ... far from it ... but I remembered enough to get by, more or less. Basically, everything went pretty smoothly.

The symposium took up the better part of a week ... see my summary link, above. I am certainly happy I participated, as I got a chance to meet some very good European and Mediterranean scientists. A very good experience, overall. I was scheduled to present our joint paper on diagnostics (based on our formal papers that remain, as yet, in the process of reaching journal publication), but I was surprised by my co-authors on a paper about the climatology of tornadoes in the Balearics ... they wanted me to make the presentation! Being the one of us with English as a native language, I reluctantly agreed to do this. I guess both presentations went reasonably well.

During the Symposium, I had to grant an interview with the local paper. Afterward, I was again asked to give a "conference" (what we would call a "seminar") at UIB, which I was glad to do ... it was a joint affair, with Miguel Gaya. I hope the students and staff enjoyed it ... Miguel's presentation was NOT in English, but I believe it went well.

After several days of discussing our joint research, all too soon, it was time to go home again. Too many things left undone, once again. There are more photographs to be seen from this trip, and I have many more that I want to get, when I return again sometime.