Well, here’s a thing. When I was young, I loved summer but I wasn’t into hanging around the beach baking in the sun because that way madness (and melanoma) lies. Did you know that melanoma kills a lot of Aussies? The sun out-does venomous spiders, snakes and bugs in the killing department. Basically, it’s an extermination machine disguised as a necessity to life. Water’s the same. A little is good for you; too much and it can kill you.
But some of it is mighty purty!
As a kid, I didn’t mind hot weather at all. Staying in jeans all day when it was 36°C didn’t seem to bother me. Standing on hot pavement in bare feet? No worries. An afternoon in the beer garden in full sun? Sure!
When I worked in an office that doubled as a server room (that’s IT speak for you non nerds – it’s the room where all the computery stuff lives, so it needs to be cold), I usually wore thermal socks and boots with my suits. The suit jacket stayed on all day, even when I went outside. In fact, I’d go outside and sit on a concrete seat in the sun for 15 minutes at a time to warm up like the reptile I’d clearly become.
It could be 35°C at 6pm, and I’d spend 40 minutes walking home IN A BLACK SUIT and said thermal socks and boots. I'd barely break a sweat until I was a street away from home, and once I got there I'd get into shorts and a t-shirt for about ten minutes before having to don jeans and socks again. I suspect all those years in the server room might have broken my thermostat.
In the last 5 or so years, 25°C feels like it might as well be 42°C. My base temperature seems to be set to ‘simmer’ with occasional spikes into ‘flash fry’, but the advent of summer puts me firmly into ‘lava’ territory. Some days I feel like I could set new records on the Scoville scale. So, as inviting as the beach may be, I generally only go when it's cooler in the evening. You know...like 30°C.
Having spent Christmas in Casterton being parboiled, and New Year in Adelaide being barbequed, we were naturally pretty keen to get home to our little house that has no air conditioning, completely ineffective insulation and a black tiled roof, just in time for the burny bastard in the sky to fire up its heat beam on Melbourne.
Not content with cranking out some 35°C days, the killer sun has seen fit to have a stab at some mid-40°C sessions, and I've just tried not to die as a result. I'm sure I'm not the only one. Am I?
I managed to get myself down the Bellarine Peninsula for a quiet late afternoon/early evening contemplation of my navel, a few old bits of pier and the bliss that is 28°C with a sea breeze. I could quite happily have slept out here except for the mozzies, the boaties and fish guts, but the fat devil living in my stomach demanded cheese and no girl can argue with that!