From Warmer Climes
Yesterday, I had a moment of self flagellation and considered the very real possibility I am a winter coward. And this cowardice, that sees me hover within the walls of my apartment for a great deal of time, exiting only when I really have to (guilt concerning fresh air, teaching a class, milk for the next morning’s coffee) may be affecting my overall sense of general self. This flagellation occurred quite despite the fact I have, really, come to terms with the fact that for me to survive winter, as an Antipodean reptile, I simply must hibernate, and when I search deep within my soul, I am okay with that. I am able to block out the intonations of ‘there is no such thing as terrible weather, just impractical clothing’, because that is complete rubbish and whoever came up with that saying is someone who was born in a boat in the North Sea and raised with the hares amongst the heather and wild winds. I suspect this flagellation occurred in the first place because in the early hours of the morning, one is prone to overthinking the smallest of things, and suddenly one finds oneself questioning the very meaning of their life and their future, based on how they’re attempting to handle weather.
Anyway. The flipside of all of this is, yesterday, I planned and executed two outings. The first, was a stroll to the local markets for a coffee with a pal. It was sunny and crisp and die Lüdde was completely thrilled by the slippery slide. How tremendous, I thought. Then came a few pellets of rain as the clouds blew in. Then came the snow, great flurries of it. We hid under the roof of the currywurst truck, and die Lüdde ate a really well rounded morning snack of pommes mit mayo and that dastardly ‘curry’ sauce. Then the sun came back out and we walked home.
A few hours later, we rugged up to go and visit a friend on the other side of town. Within five minutes of leaving the house and thinking dreamily of how lovely an afternoon stroll in the sun was going to be, the Schneeregen – snow rain, to those not familiar with the official Ghastly Weather Terms – began. Then it sort of became really mean snow that isn’t quite snow, but has upped the ante from Schneeregen and means you need to ideally find somewhere to wait it out. Like a bus shelter under which there is theoretically plenty of room, but none of the three people already occupying it particularly want to move. It ended a quickly as it began, and we pushed out from under the bus shelter, back onto the puddly paths. By the time we got across town, it was bright and sunny and I felt, even, a tad warm.
The sky has been belching all week, spewing out hail storms and snow flurries and Schneeregen, in between bouts of dazzling sun. It times its worst offerings for the moment we leave the house, fully bundled. Except for one hail storm, which poured down out of nowhere about five minutes before I was about to go outside. Felt really smug about that one.
The main thing is, winter is clearing out its belly, and should move along soon. Until it does, there are always memories of warmer climes and barefoot times, to tide us over.
To wit, the last photos of the steamy, tropical urban jungle that hosted us for a few weeks.