|A bit of our lovely new garden|
After a crisp dry February and truly lovely and unseasonably warm March, the Southeast of England had to declare a drought condition and instill a hosepipe ban. The irony is, about 10 days later it began to rain and it didn't stop for about 6 weeks. I follow the Thames to work and each morning it got a little higher until it threatened to overspill the bank. The nearby public footpath became a nearly impassable bog, and yet I still can't rinse my car with a hose. Worse than the rain, it was just so. damn. cold.
Let me first say, I'm generally not even sure, officially, how warm or cold it is around here. I don't know how to judge temperatures stated in Celsius. I'm confounded by a country that measures its distance in miles and its beer in pints, but goes all metric when it comes to stating the temperature. I think it's some kind of conspiracy. A conspiracy happily joined by my husband, who is perennially hot-blooded and gleefully took the opportunity to declare that 15 degrees is a perfectly legitimate maximum for the thermostat. I had to look it up, but that is only 59 degrees!!
For weeks temperatures (outside) struggled to reach the mid-50s and I was in a semi-hypothermic state. Having lived through a couple of Oregon winters with only a woodstove for heat - and that only making one room in the house truly comfortable, I'm no stranger to cold. But I was completely caught off guard by frigid depth of the bone-chilling cold that crept into me and refused to be dislodged. I ran a space heater under my desk at work, showered twice a day to try to drive the chill away and spent most of my time at home huddled under blankets and cradling a hot water bottle.
Last week, I'd had my fill and decided it was finally time to start bitching in earnest about the weather. As the lovely Helen pointed out, at least that meant I was officially becoming a Brit. And then two days ago (cue the chorus of angels and shining beams of light) the sun not only came out, but the temperatures suddenly soared to the upper 20s (that's low to mid 80s in real money). I've been lovely and warm through and through.
Brits celebrated for all of about half an hour. And then promptly began complaining that it was too hot. Well, at least they're never short of something to talk about.