Usually, when bathing the beagle – one of the beagle’s least favourite activities – I have to wait until the day is warm enough for her to dry off outside. No-one wants a house full of wet dog.
Today though, I had to wait until it was cool enough to be able to leave her outside. And it seemed that she quite enjoyed the refreshing water. Even then, she dried off in mere minutes. It’s been one of those February days, but before Christmas. Perhaps just on the limits of what I can handle: 36C in the shade is too much for my pale, European enzymes.
The washing was dry before I could hang it up. The gardener melted early on, despite several (or more) litres of cold water and the offer for him to come back another time. I cooked the dinner simply by accidentally leaving it out of the fridge.
I’m hiding inside with a cold drink and I might hit the pool later this evening before watching the last bit of football for who knows how long…?
Have a become a bit soft in my old age or is it just a shifting of my thresholds because of my ongoing experience of differing geographically imposed conditions?
I’m down in Agulhas (alone) and it’s pretty miserable out. But it’s not that miserable. It’s wet and grey, but it’s not that wet and grey. (OK, it is that wet and grey right now.) And yet I found myself hiding inside (and even in bed) until hunger and a need for coffee dragged me out into the kitchen. There’s nothing wrong with staying in bed if you have no commitments elsewhere of course, but the outdoors is right there, and I feel like I should be in it. And this would be actually classed as ‘not too bad’ in my homeland and childhood. (Indeed, it would be described as ‘positively tropical’ in my early university years.) So is it that I’m just a bit soft now because I’m older, or is it just that I’m not used to it anymore?
And does it even matter?
I’m not daft: it’s absolutely pitching it down at the moment, and why would anyone – no matter their age or location – choose to go out in that? And in opening the front door to have a peek outside, there was a sign (quite literally) from above, as a scorpion fell from the door frame onto my head. We’re both ok. But I’m inside and much drier than him now.
But in the next window in the weather, I will get out and about: appropriately dressed for the conditions, obviously.
Meanwhile, it’s back to the cafetière and Mark Radcliffe on 6Music. Because why not?
Friends of ours emigrated to the UK this morning. Everyone seems to be emigrating at the moment. So much so that I’m wondering if we’re going to be the only people left here soon. Almost a case of “will the last ones out please switch off the light”, although that happens fairly regularly anyway. This particular emigration was foisted upon the family in question by the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m quite sure they’d still be happily here if it weren’t for the nastiness of the last 18 months.
But I digress.
I know how hard it is to leave friends, your family and your home country behind. I had a bit of last minute assistance in that regard in that the weather on my way down to Heathrow was absolutely filthy and most anyone who had the option to leave the country for sunnier climes would likely have done so as soon as they possibly could. Cape Town was nowhere as near as helpfully persuasive this morning.
Eina. Fancy that being your last view (for a while, at least) of your hometown.
And then having to fly to Johannesburg. And then (eventually) to London. I mean, obviously, the place has its perks and positives, but sunrises over the Simonsberg like this? Not so much.
Good luck out there. I’ll keep the photos coming in case you miss the mountains.
There’s a problem. Such was the weather yesterday (very sunny; very, very windy), that there was nothing to photograph except amazing waves, and just so much light and colour that it looks like I’ve RBOSSed everything.
Not the case, I promise.
If you’ve not been to Cape Town, I can completely understand that when you look at these images, you immediately think that I have gone mad with the sliders in Lightroom. I would never.
I remember being utterly astonished by the clarity of the light and the colour when I first came over here. Not every day, obviously – it’s grey and miserable today. I’m sure that there are other places in the world with equally amazing conditions, but I haven’t been there yet.
But I swear that yesterday, the turquoise really was that turquoise, the white honestly that white and the other colours genuinely were whatever colours they were. If only we could have enjoyed them without our eyeballs being ripped out by the wind and assaulted by the sand.
Still, great day out…
(Oh, and I know that I probably shouldn’t have monochromed that one photo, but I just have a nagging feeling that I’m going to need a dramatic B&W wave photo one day. As you do.)
It’s Christmas. The festive season. Holiday time. Call it what you want, but down here in Cape Town, we also call it SUMMER.
However, the weather this SUMMER has not been very SUMMERy. Rain on and off over the last week, temperatures peaking in the low 20s, cool winds blowing in off the Atlantic and making us all miserable.
This is not what I signed up for.
I signed up for SUMMER where I could be outside in the sun. Playing in the pool, lounging on a… on a… lounger. Not running across car parks trying to stay dry. Not wearing LONG TROUSERS. IN DECEMBER.
It’s annoying other people too. Like the staff at Pick n Pay Liquor in Constantia Village, who were feeling anything but festive this morning. Opening ten minutes late, snapping at customers who knocked on the door pointing out it was after 9 o’clock. My breakfast plans were rapidly becoming brunch. Seriously, rarely have I seen a group of individuals give less of a toss about anything. Everything was too much trouble. And it was grey and raining. Coincidence? Well, yes, possibly, because they might well be like that all the time.
But anyway – back to my main point, which is that SUMMER hasn’t arrived in Cape Town yet. Will it ever arrive? After all, we went through a few years when winter never turned up.
I’ll make the best of it, of course. I mean, what choice do we have? But I’d much rather be at risk of sunburn than of hypothermia.
And so I googled the weather for the next seven days. And… well… I mean… just look at the state of this:
EIGHTEEN on Christmas Day? I’m going to have to wrap my kids up in swaddling cloths. SEVENTEEN on Boxing Day? No wonder the shepherds want to come in from the fields: it’s pissing down out there.
And don’t tell me that it would be colder in the UK. Of course it would. It’s meant to be. It’s WINTER and it’s all evocative and romantic, innit?
This is not what I signed up for and I am understandably very unhappy.