The British Summer


However unlikely it may seem, we do get a summer and some really  hot days and if we are lucky, even weeks.Though you can never guarantee it,as far as weather goes,we can never be sure though.

Given that we are an island in-between the Atlantic and the mainland Europe, it is no surprise that we get such un predictable and often silly weather. I have known all the four season to happen in one day, hale, snow, sun and warmth.

So as I was saying, we do get warmth and sun, short lived though it may be ; but there is such a thing as the British summer.

Because it is a unique occurrence and a short lived occurrence, we tend to get a bit silly  when it happens. I was brought up in India, and there ,as you might say it  summer hap all year round.

Am constantly told that “you must be used to the heat”! Err no, we avoided the heat like the plague. When I was growing up and later too, we were not allowed to be outdoors after midday or so. The afternoon sun is avoided like at all cost. Only those who worked outdoors,like the manual workers were seen outside.The office workers and and everyone else will be indoors, blinds drawn and with coolers and now the air conditioners. When I was a child, there was no air conditioning available but we had thick blinds made of aromatic grasses,known as “Khas”, they had to be constantly sprinkled with water,and if an electric fan was placed behind them they produced the most refreshing, aromatic cool air, Far superior to the air conditioning. Not as dry or harmful as the latter.

So though I should know better ,and not go mad in the mid day sun, I have and I do. I too have, whenever the sun has shone ,in the past ;have packed my children in the car and headed towards the beach! Or rather have joined the masses , and queued for hours in the traffic jam,for what is the norm for us Brits ,our yearly ritual. When the sun shines, we have to be out in it. Contrary to ,what I was told by my mother,that the sun will make my skin go dark and then no-one will marry me!

We Brits must be the only ones, as Noel Coward said ,who go out in the mid day sun. We feel compelled to.It triggers something in our psyche. Those who may be should keep their clothes on,strip off,feet are forced into sandals,and not being to walking in them ;we waddle off feeling elated and cheerful.

And though am still not bold enough to let it all hang out, am out in my garden, sitting and soaking in the sunshine. Often chuckling to myself as to how cross my mother would be if she could see how dark I have become,being out in the dreaded sun.

As I sit here on my patio, and  the scent of my Tuber rose plants wafts in this warm and humid evening,am also grateful for these wonderful .rare summer’s days. They are so precious,simply because they are so rare.

British summers. I LOVe them.


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