I also would not be surprised by an S-shaped track. Before the high can slide east and push Rita more to the north, it first has to build north of the system, which would temporarily block more of a northward movement. Where it ends up is still anyone's guess, but the prospect of some subtle changes in direction before landfall increases the possible error. Nobody should be congratulating themselves on predicting a more northward track until we see where landfall occurs.
The statements from NHC earlier that "some weakening is expected in the next 24 hours" were accurate. The latest advisory indicates that some "fluctuations" are possible in the next 24 hours, so they are not indicating either weakening or strengthening, which is wise considering the unpredictable effects of an ERC.
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