It turns out, all that pollen covering my car happened in part because of the really pleasant winter we had in Raleigh this year. Really:
The N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources' Air Quality Division measured a sample of air Wednesday that had 3,524 pollen grains per cubic meter at its Raleigh office.
The count normally falls between 1,000 and 1,500 in the spring. The previous peak was on March 27, 2007, when air quality staff over at DENR measured 2,925 pollen grains per cubic meter.
The jump in pollen has made this a stuffy, sneezy, eye-itching spring for pollen-allergic Triangle residents.
Be grateful, however, you're not in Winston-Salem. The pollen count there was measured at 9,632 grains per cubic meter on Tuesday, according to DENR.
Despite the predicted thunderstorms tonight, predicted pollen levels remain "very high" (only because "OMFG" isn't an official pollen level).
Apparently, though, it's worse elsewhere: