Saturday, 27 July 2013

Weather you like it or not

Chéri, did you see my flip flop?

After a 9-month long autumn accompanied by exactly 9 months of endless complaints about the miserable weather you would expect the British to welcome above average temperatures with a smile and a sigh of relief. You should know better. 

Complaining is a national sport here. I did not say that. And the weather and its variations is by far the favourite topic of discussion in the British culture. It is an handy subject to revert to after someone foolishly replied to a carelessly thrown "you alright?" and actually stopped to chat and know how well you are doing today (when will the Continentals learn...).

The (pre-Eurostar) secluded Island is blessed with long periods of rain. And it does not take months of intense British integration (here is your crumpet, dear) to understand that the British Subject is above all fond of complaining about the weather.

June was to be forgotten as the most miserable month of autumn. Countless blogs posts have been written about this. Islanders in their misery were sharing counts of endless summers spent running in the woods when they were younger, which could fool any Southeners living below the river Loire but not a Norman.

Summer is a rare commodity here and I was prepared for the worse, even looking into buying my first pair of wellies. "I gave up, there won't be  summers any more in this country," a source close to the matter said.

But miracles do still happen, and we should never underestimate the power of greenhouse gas. July brought us Summer, a real Summer. At first people smiled, happy again do dig out their flip flops and too soon forgotten shorts. But the joy was short-lived and made space to more complaining. Done with the rain, British Subjects turned their anger to the sun and the heat.

"Bring on the Autumn," I heard. "I had enough of Summer now," said another one. "I can't sleep in this heat, I would rather have the rain," added a sun burned man. Why oh why, I ask you? They know, don't they, that this weather is not here to stay.

"Well, we are not used to this kind of heat, we are mild weather people," I was told. Yet some won't hesitate to offer their un-sunscreened body to the midday sun, in the unique purpose to proudly show off their purple-red marks afterwards and complain (again) about the pain.

The weird thing is that this month of July will join the ranks of the beautiful legendary summers which paved the childhood of our British complainers. Parents will talk about July 2013 with stars in their eyes, and children will fall asleep with a smile on their faces hoping this could happen again. 

Oh well, as long as Summer stays as it is, I say bring on the complaints. Is this rain I hear outside?