Tuesday, December 28, 2010

We've got obsessions

We all have them, obsessive thoughts, tendencies. This blog is representative of one of mine, which recently took hold in a way I could have never anticipated.  And I’m not talking of my rather excessive excitement about a white Christmas (happy holiday season BTW).


We’ve spoken before about the weather ‘negatively’ impacting fun times. Rain on your wedding day (not ironic), temperatures so hot you’re seeing mirages, but most of that you can combat. You can take action to make you feel in control, and not controlled, by your weather system. All that changes with travel. Yes, I’m talking about the current and seemingly unrelenting weather frustration people are feeling towards their xmas travel plans. It would have been remiss of me not to discuss this issue and also very unlikely to not be personally involved with my own weather travel journey.


I was stuck in Cologne for a day just before Christmas. I was meant to be coming home, work had finished, everyone else had left and there was me. Alone. By myself. Angry. I stayed in a hotel for one night then got up at 4am to catch the only flight back to London the next morning. The flight scheduled for 7am eventually left at 11am, I made it into London Stansted, caught a train home and bitched about the whole saga on arrival.


When you sum it up, it’s not a huge drama. I’m home, it sucked, but now it doesn’t seem like the drama I thought it was at the time (cheers hindsight). During the stuck day and the travel day however, my anxiety levels were rather high. As an example, this is what my browser looked like.


I hit refresh on each of those tabs probably every three seconds (except maybe facebook, every five. You're not all crazy updaters). It was like tourettes of the keyboard, completely uncontrollable. Weather updates, airport closures, flight cancellations, I needed to know it all. And what's stranger is that this didn’t dissipate when I finally got home. I felt the need to watch every news update on the increasingly long queues in ‘freezing’ conditions outside train stations. I watched people’s make shift abodes in Heathrow Airport grow more and more homelike the more nights they were trapped (I swear I saw someone mocking up an ikea coffee table in front of his floor bed and silver foil blankets). The overwhelming feeling I had whilst watching this unfold was… SUCKERS! I made it out and you didn’t and I was feeling so happy it wasn’t me. 


Where was my Christmas spirit!? I couldn’t believe my reaction. My obsession with my own travel had morphed into a self congratulatory obsession that I’d done the right thing, booked the right flight, paid the right people, and if I hadn’t done it that way I would have never gotten out.  I WON AT CHRISTMAS TRAVEL!


I’ve tried to move on since then, pay more attention to my loved ones and the Christmas Eve ice skating, but then it started happening IN THE USA. People are tweeting about broken down cars, frozen Grandmas, missing the best xmas ever and instead spending it with Louise from Liverpool (see previous post re: Amsterdam), and all I can think is, IT’S NOT ME! STILL WINNING!!


This, apparently, is what Christmas is all about. The joy of not being somewhere shit, while others are. Tis the season.


London tomorrow, time for less rugging up and more outdoorsy fun. I saw a girl wearing actual shorts today (that spells crazy). Don’t take it that far, but the feeling outside is a lot milder than we have been having. Enjoy the last hours of 2010!


Monday, December 13, 2010

The weather kindness of strangers...

I stumbled upon some kinsfolk this week and it came as quite a surprise to find them not at some sort of weather trainspotting Christmas drinks at the MET (where surely stumbling would be the NORM! Yeah!), but in the single room of a VERY swish Paris hotel. Coming back to number 34 late one night, I entered to curtains drawn, soft music playing and this lying on my pillow.



HOW DID THEY KNOW? For a moment I thought maybe they were incredibly thorough and had dedicated researchers for each of their guests (Mr K in room 204 is depressingly single and here on a boring work trip. Please leave him extra Jack Daniels in the mini bar and a pass to the Moulin Rouge. Gayle in 65 is on her own eat, pray, love odyssey. She'll require an excess of complimentary chocolate and and Mr K’s room number). I’m now fairly sure that kind of attention is time consuming and probably doesn’t involve reading my blog. What it does mean is that this particular hotel leaves this kind note on what to expect tomorrow because they are weather lovers.  This little thought that counts sets this inn apart from thousands of others trying to corner the weather watching market (clearly their aim).

On close inspection what draws us to this little card is the graphics; they really have covered nearly all bases.  Cheeky sun and cloud cover is represented, along with the necessary precipitation graphic (this is the only one that could be a little too ambiguous. I mean, FAT rain? Or little light rain? Knowing the possibilities for rain are indeed endless, we’re letting this slide. For now).  Following the graphics you have the temperature reading and they’ve given you two readings, as is standard. The key difference here is that they’ve presented morning and afternoon. Morning! Afternoon! Squeal!!! How I hate the standard two temperature offering which gives you the daytime reading followed by a random middle of the night reading. Even people up and at 'em in the middle of the night aren’t generally querying the temperature. Morning and afternoon! What sense they make, the French.

On a negative side I was a little put out that the nameless room maid responsible for this treat hadn’t bothered to indicate the wind force, as was set out. To be fair, if I remember the day perhaps there really WAS no wind to speak of, so we’ll let no name off for this one. For now.

Everything about this little card speaks to the aesthetically minded weather watcher. The font size (small and firm), the contrasting colours (in delightful Autumnal flavours), the format that resembles a multiple choice test (which at school were my favourite. God I love filling in a form), all of these finer details give little bursts of formal weather report joy.

In a world of pain, suffering, financial woes and jeggings, it is indeed the little things.  So thank you to whoever committed to this little thought at the hotel's costumer service brainstorming session. Your fight to bring weather to the same level as the breakfast menu is a valiant one.

London tomorrow: I would tick the happy smiling sun, then possibly get a bit freestyle with some imagery around the temperatures. 4 degrees is a pretty fun number to play with...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Weather angst

Oh the weather rage I’ve felt this weekend. You’d think with this blog I’d be all loved up and hippy with the weather (take it easy man, it’s just rain!) but no. I am not immune to turning on the weather, using a tone normally associated with seamen, when it comes to the weather adversely affecting my TRAVEL.

I found myself in the setting that has been the inspiration for so many movies, spoofs and reality TV shows, my plane was delayed indefinitely due to snow. I was stuck for what felt like an entire weekend in the multi travelator sporting, limited food but abundance of fragrance offering airport of Schiphol in Amsterdam. Oh the rage. You know the completely debilitating feeling you have when everything is happening TO you and you can do nothing about it? Had it. And the boiling discomfort and frustration, mixed with anxiety that you’re going to miss something crucial if you even go to the toilet? Had that too. I also cursed the day I had ever seen snow and decided it had no real positive benefit on any of nature's ecosystems, so why the hell did it exist in the first place. The very weather activity which you’ve previously read about in glowing, nay nostalgic, posts in this blog became the one reason I didn’t get home until three in the morning, my bestie didn’t make it to a fantastic girls weekend and why I met and had actual dialogue with about 12 random people.

Lets look at some of the players in my little skit, shall we? Me, solo, on 4 hours sleep, getting more and more depressed with each increasing hour, but generally the silent extra. The very angry, profanity favouring, regional English lass (lets call her Louise), the smart, well dressed London male duo coming back from holiday and the group of four Australian 20 somethings heading back from a week of memory loss and greening out.


Louise, for the most part, was the protagonist. She partook in aggressive public conversations with airport staff about the estimated departure for our flight, vocal calls for a mini revolution from those of us not participating, constant pleading for someone to accompany her to the smoking room and finally divulged her life story, played out pantomime style. We were the for 5 hours and her fly was down the entire time.


The male duo were the supporting cast by taking it upon themselves to constantly update the group via the British Airways website and a slowly decreasing in power iphone. They also walked really fast around the airport, doing laps of the perimeter. They were, to be fair, quite handy. And fit.


Our Australian quartet showcased in a bit part, mostly entertaining for having one still ‘greening out’ mate who fell asleep on an airport buggy for three hours and then awoke thinking they had made it to London. The others showed their skills by joining Louise on one of her infamous trips to the smoking lounge, only to leave their luggage there. Luckily the males were on hand to fast walk them back.


Ultimately the very frustrating and inconvenient night turned into an epic story I’ve told at least three times since. Here I am telling it in part to you! Why do we love these stories? We wouldn’t normally take relish in retelling an event that at the time was filled with such frustration, but weather travel stories are generally hilarious. We might not be laughing when we’re in them, but the aftermath can become some of our best material. We’re faced with adversity, we prevail, and the Louise’s of the world become some of the funniest shit we’ve told at the pub.


So I can’t be all hating on the inclement weather, it’s time to change the attitude and have a little foresight. The next time you’re stuck in snow, floods, an insane tornado, get through the angst but remember to take notes. In the retelling, it’s all in the details.





London tomorrow, we are slowly experiencing that deep winter chill where 5 degrees feels balmy. Tomorrow will NOT be tshirt weather.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Let it snow, let it snow


Our UK winter adventure started this week with the promise of SNOW. This has been combined with the trickling through of social network statements from friends in Berlin, Amsterdam, Bristol, all decrying this to be SNOW TIME!

And the excitement! Truly, people are losing their shit over the snow. They’re also losing their shit when promised snow and said snow is a no show (how awesome is language).  What is it about this white rainfall? A friend on facebook wondered, “Am I the only one who finds the fact that frozen water falls from the sky exciting and weird?” No Kizza, you’re not alone. In fact, it seems everyone is in awe of the whiteness. Just look at the ways we get so heavily involved during a snow day.

SNOWMEN. Hilarious. We decide the best ode to this natural wonder is to build something from it vaguely resembling the human form. Oh, people. So predictable.


Look how happy he is!!


SNOW FIGHT. Throwing anything else shaped into a ball at someone (read mud, rocks, faeces) and you’d be banished from the fun times friendship group. But with snow? You’re the FUNNEST GUY EVER! Snowball fight!

SNOW ANGELS. Living in Canada as a kid, we would do this on the walk home from school. The snow fight rule pretty much applies here, mum would be none too happy if we came home after making dirt angels.  But in snow? Photo moment!


This isn't me, nor do i know the small children in this photo


SNOW CAVES. Another childhood moment, because I have yet to do this as an adult (the day is still young…) We used to carve snow caves from the mass of snow outside our house and my sister would determine the strength of the structure by asking me to lie in the cave while she ‘tested’ the roof. With her boots. She was no engineer so this inevitably led to tears. Mine.

So snow = fun, excitement and immaturity. But there’s another side, when snow = cosy winter times with the fire, soft smiles and forgotten arguments. For some reason the delivery of snow, even though it’s a result of freezing temperatures, is the weather phenomenon that represents hope, joy, calm, rebirth. How many Christmas movie moments showcase an argument dissolving into swelling orchestral music and snowfall? In that surreal, engrossing weather moment, all is forgiven.

Maybe it’s the gentle way it falls from the sky, the soft pillows it forms on tree branches, the white purity which covers the mundane everyday, but snow is the warmest, most joyful weather hug on a grey day. And its hands are freezing. 



London tomorrow, cold and sunny blah blah. But lets not talk about tomorrow. Lets talk about TUESDAY! Highest potential for actual snow this week. Let it snow!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Holiday, celebrate


A co worker came back to our grey, overheated London office this week sporting the tan of a Brazilian parade dancer. Golden, even and envy inspiring (clearly admired for the healthy glow, not the cancer potential). This one look defined where she had been on her holiday (clearly not to take curling lessons) and also implied she had THE BEST TIME EVER. Why? Because the weather was amazing. So amazing it had tattooed it's joy on her skin in a golden hue.

We wear our holiday weather marks with pride. The tan lines we just couldn't avoid, the racoon like goggle mark after the best ever ski trip. These markings from the environment are proof that we are open-minded world travellers, with the body to pull off a bikini.

The tan wasn't always a look you wore inappropriately low clothing to show off, or tried to have someone replicate whilst wearing a plastic see through g string. Back in the day (not used in the common sense, like back in the day last week, but much more literally, meaning back in the day 1800s) the tan was considered the fashion choice of the lower classes. You were tanned because you were out working the fields like a schmuck, not sitting in the parlour learning languages you would never use (thanks Jane Austen). Social climbing women of this day even went as far as to use lead-based makeup to appear super pale (and therefore clearly unversed in the ways of the plough). Wiki sums up the risks of this pale trend perfectly by telling us “these cosmetics slowly caused their death through lead poisoning.”

Come 1903 the Noble Prize for medicine was awarded to Niels Finsen after he discovered his light therapy cured diseases such as rickets. All of a sudden a tan was healthy, if not also representative of a now dormant contagious disease. With tanning needing a severe PR lift in steps the lady herself, Coco Chanel (what look didn’t she pioneer???) Coco spent a little too long enjoying the rays in the French Riviera, therefore creating a legion of women who wanted the crisp, sunburnt look too. The holiday tan (along with it’s high end lifestyle implications) was born.

Nowadays, despite numerous sun smart campaigns (slip, slop, slap being my favourite), we still rejoice when someone says 'you look SO brown.' Sub text: I am overwrought with the jealousy I'm feeling as a result of your freedom to spend numerous days in a row bathing in blazing sun. The amazing weather of our holiday is written all over our skin, in a glowing tribute to it’s carefree days.

Holiday, celebrate hey?



Paris tomorrow (where I shall be working up a storm – weather metaphor!), looks a little on the chilly front. With no hint of peaking Autumn sun (it’s not even winter proper yet!!), get your gloves out. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Why are we always talking smack about the weather?

First up I WISH I had come up with that title. I didn't, it wasn't me, but I join its indignant chorus. Why are we always talking smack about the weather?

I came across an outstanding, possibly written solely for me, article on NPR. 
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130373159 
Entitled the above it delves into the reasons why our approach to describing the weather is unfair, mean and almost downright uncool.

We speak of attacking tornadoes, deadly winds, killing frosts, sinister clouds. We treat heat waves like crime waves, storm threats like terrorist threats.
How often have you felt in peril when faced with a ‘severe weather system’? It IS severe! You're right! Words are powerful persuaders and Linton Weeks (hello amazing name) discusses how we use them willy nilly when describing the weather. 
The article goes into the reasons why our own trusted weather reporters feel the need to sensationalise the weather, "A Weather Channel forecaster speaks of an October storm front as a "disturbance moving its way through the Ohio Valley ... even sneaking toward Pittsburgh.""  The sensationalist approach works for every great story. Exaggeration, drama, gratuitous use of adjectives, all helps us tell a much more engaging tale. It just might be time the weather stopped playing our villain and became our heroine.

We can fix this travesty with a little spin, another great tool of sensationalist journalism. Rain on your wedding day, an awesome way to incorporate umbrella fashion into otherwise boring group photos! Scorching sun when you're playing bowls, unreal opportunity to whip your top off and tie it around your head, Arabian nights style. Spin it right and there’s a positive side to even the most threatening of clouds.
Use the back chick as your inspiration. Front is just rather ambitious with only a bowls uniform to play with. 

Remember the last flooded outdoor festival you went to? How you were bitching and moaning about not wanting to get amongst it and that your favourite “musical group” would now have to play for you in your hotel bathroom because there was no freaking way you were getting out in THAT to see them? And then remember seeing 20 year old shirtless guys being absolute jerks and diving (literally) into a round of mud wrestling? Look at them just not giving a shit about their shirts (they’re off anyway) or the fact that this is the only year they forgot to bring gum boots. Hows them just throwing caution to the screaming wind and getting knee deep in the sludgy, smelly, thick mud pits? Possibly having the best time ever? Those 20 year olds on a footy high could teach you something,* they were having a lot more fun than you.
In the end we’re not going to change the weather by bitching about it. In fact, we’re just causing ourselves grief over something well beyond our skill set. Yes the weather can contribute to a shitty day and YES the weather can kill, in uber dramatic circumstances, but the weather is generally not out to get YOU. It’s just doing it’s thing.  
So how about instead of talking smack about the weather you let it join your homeboys? Then she’s always got your back…rain or shine.

London tomorrow,
a delightful “brisk” morning, perfect for starting the day with the longest, hottest shower you can squeeze in. On the walk to work fog patches will dot the atmosphere like a non contagious miasma. It will be terrifically dry later on, with the possible odd shower, especially near coasts. You lucky sea folk!

*These boys may be able to teach you things, but the lesson on when a motionless, drunk waitress is most definitely up for having sex with you and four of your mates is probably worth skipping.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

There's a chill in the air...

So I've spent these past few days in complete weather awe. Iceland is possibly the only place I've visited where the weather not only affects the day to day, but is completely linked to people's lives. From their fashion styles to food, to literature, this whole place is one big, earthy pot of weather soup.


On arrival, snow!! Look, it's snow! And a feeling that it actually wasn't as cold as we thought it would be, despite it being 2 degrees. Night proved I'd gotten slightly cocky, with icy streets having it out with London weather boots. Pleased to report though, that the winter coat so snuggly packed away until now is totally doing it's job.

Day two
is a different story, and the weather completely kicks my ass. About 3 degrees, possibly colder, with a piercing Arctic wind and just a smattering of rain. A bit damp, a bit chilly and a bit uncomfortable.

Then today,
full 'back to nature' mode. The outdoors here in Iceland are stunning, breathtaking and brutal. A picturesque day with a beaming sun and I don't think I've actually ever been colder. This is the kind of weather that really showcases your inadequacies. Tomorrow I plan on warming these limbs back up with some geothermal soaking... 

So with the extreme chill factor the best example of Icelandic fusion with the weather is that
ALL the cool kids are in knits. Grandma knits! These are patterned and possibly sport a hood. Amazing. Found out there is a national knitting association of Iceland which not only has it's own shop, but advertises in cool kids mags. The need to dress for the weather has affected the entire culture of fashion, and for the better, considering how snug I am. (Did you think I wasn't going to purchase a knit?)





With the daylight hours fading into a seemingly never ending winter darkness, first timers here can apparently get the winter sads*. Having a cheeky tea break (from the weather) I discovered an article on, yep, surviving the winter. The very quaint and definitely sensible tips were all for making your apartment the cosiest it can be, taking up winter sports and eating. 


With the weather friendly dressing, embracing of the elements and a smart attitude to making the weather work FOR you, this is my kind of town!

Tomorrow in Reykjavik, a beautiful day to end seeing the Northern Lights! About 2 degrees, crystal clear and brutal. Just the way Iceland likes it.  


* this I am not making up. There is a diagnosis called SAD (not yet generally accepted, but out there), Seasonal Affective Disorder.  
http://www.psychologyinfo.com/depression/sad.htm 
Take that, says the weather. 



Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bright Sunshiny Day

Today in London was pure weather joy. Stepping out into the morning you just wanted to gulp in the air and sunshine and digest it for eternity. It was mild, calm and oh, so bright. A seriously perfect Autumn day.

Just look at what was peeking out over Portobello Road this morning!



I know it’s slightly weird to bring digestion and weather together, but in the time of the year when you know, you can SMELL, how close winter is, it seems like everyone needs to store a little sunshine SOMEWHERE for the coming months.

But how do you really do it? How can you feel the summer in the dead of winter?

FREEZE BERRIES. I have a freezer full of rosy red and blue goodness. If there’s something that spells summer fun more than berry compote, I haven’t found it.

PLAY VOLLEYBALL. Inside. How summery is volleyball? It’s like you’re on summer camp. In the 50s. With Patrick Swayze. (Sigh…)

HEAT YOUR HOUSE TO 28 AND ONLY WEAR SINGLETS. Not very environmental and only recommended in times of desperation.

WATCH MOVIES ABOUT THE BEACH. Wearing swimmers. (See aforementioned need to heat). Not Beaches though. Too sad. Or The Beach. Too scary. National Lampoon's Summer Vacation?

LISTEN TO THE BEACH BOYS. In particular anything from Surfin’ Safari, and Kokomo.

What about keeping the cosy winter vibe through summer? Sometimes you just want to hike up to the Blue Mountains and drink red wine in front of an open fire. But it’s 38 degrees c. How to reconnect?

FAKE SNOW. My mum once bought a whole two cans of this stuff for our xmas tree. It doesn’t look anything like snow, but it’s white. And white on green looks cold. Get spraying!

GO ICESKATING. Inside. A Mount Thebarton used to be near my house in Adelaide. They always used to play Spaceman by Babylon Zoo. 

AIR CON. See aforementioned heating suggestion, but reverse it.

WATCH ANY MOVIE. As long as it's in a cinema. Why is it always so cold in there??

LISTEN TO BING CROSBY. In particular Winter Wonderland.


Ultimately we love the change of seasons, but those last few weeks before the change are the hardest. Who says you can't save a little of your favourite for a rainy day?


Tomorrow in London is full of more joyous temperatures and perfect, Autumn sun kisses. Embrace while you can! I have a feeling this won't last...

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Rainy days...

I've been banging on quite a bit about the weather fashion choices we make. Not to keep on it, but a very good friend divulged to me last night that she is a part of a whole new world of weather fashion. RAIN PANTS. She wears rain pants. This is because there aint no rainy weather which is going to stop her from riding her bike (she does live in Amsterdam.)

This got me thinking. Is she serious? What does she actually look like in these rain pants? Then I moved to the more sensible contemplation of how often we tailor what we wear to match the elements thrown at us by Mother Nature. The probable answer for most of us is not enough!

When I was little and getting ready for school camp, nothing gave me more giddy bursts of excitement than reading the printed list of what to pack. It often looked like this:



Everything about these lists screams sensible. Which is appropriate, because when you’re a kid you’re totally cool with wearing a hand me down Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles windbreaker. You just want to be dry, have a good time and win the “make a raft” challenge.

The lack of fashion self consciousness we had as kids is the perfect marriage to have with the weather. As adults we do sometimes make these sensible choices, like when we go white water rafting, but more often than not we’re in a constant battle of newly straightened hair vs humidity, open toed sandals vs torrential flooding. 

So,  I've been inspired by the rain pants and have now deduced that dressing for the weather is the ultimate un-fashion victim choice. We need to play friends with the outside and meet it halfway by donning a three quarter sleeve when the sun is out, but there’s a hint of wind, and making sure we have a covered toe in the wet. 

Rain pants are definitely the new black.



In Amsterdam tomorrow, all the talk of rain pants will pay off. This place gets WET. Temperatures will also be NEARLY deserving of the winter coat. Good thing the canals are so pretty…

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Why Does It Always Rain On Me?

When you don’t have an umbrella that cheeky cardinal rule kicks in, it’ll rain. Probably pour. The weather gods love a gag!

But do you really want to be carrying around a golf caddy worthy sized umbrella in potentially blazing sun? What about the teeny, emergency, in your bags ones? Are they really going to do the job?

I’m not going to go all mythbusters and roadtest the durability of these spindly protectors from the wet, but I will list some pros and cons and hopefully inspire someone to create the ultimate weather dome.

TEENY IN YOUR BAG ONES


Pros ** fits in your bag because it’s teeny

Cons ** the teeniness makes the bones somewhat fragile and this will inevitably happen:




That looks so, so sad. 


HUMONGOUS GOLF SIZED ONES

Pros ** the ultimate rain protector

Cons ** carrying




With those two options it's clear someone needs to be come up with a sturdy dome, which can also slip into the most delicate of pocket books.

Maybe these folk know how to do it?


Futuristic AND protective.



Genius, seriously. How hard is it to walk next to someone and keep underneath the umbrella edges? Answer, super hard and awkward.



It's like she's in the TV show Gladiators!!!


I'm not sure how any of those babies fold up, but surely you’d be the driest belle at any rainy ball. Lets all get inventing!


London tomorrow, no need for any kind of brolly! In fact it looks like it might even get to, shock, three quarter sleeves weather! (16 degrees +)

Or so it seems...the weather gods might be having a damned comedy night up there.


PS:


??

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Where For Art Thou, Weather?

I really don’t think trust issues come into it. It’s just that sometimes you feel like you don’t know who to rely on, who to go to for the truth, who will genuinely have your best interests at heart and ACCURATELY REPORT THE WEATHER.

Example A 



Trusted BBC weather site…. Or so I thought.

Example B



IPad weather app.


WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON???

You may feel I’m overreacting, but I think weather reading might just be a science. Like, there are machines and gadgets and things which gauge the weather, to a DEGREE. One degree means everything (see afore posted rant about the winter jacket rules). There is also a big difference between heavy rain and a cheeky sun peaking through fat drops of intermittent rain (which is how I interpret the second graphic). 
Aren’t these sites getting their data from the same source? Or are there other rogue Jess Keeley types professing to know more than the MET?

So what to do when we want a reading? You need multiple sources, obsessive analysis and to show a complete lack of loyalty. For instance if it’s your outdoor celebrating event day (wedding, 21st, 50s Mad Men pool party) start checking sites a week in advance, and then only stick with the one giving you the best outcome. The others are lying. If all you want to do is crochet and watch Buffy for six hours, quote your weather excuse from the most rainy of predictions.

Or be your own predictor. See afore posted video of my own obsessive weather predictions from a deserted island. I could not sleep unless I’d told everyone it was going to be a cloudy morning, but would DEFINITELY clear up by breakfast and ultimately end in us having THE BEST DAY EVER.

So make your weather sites work for you. Denial is one thing, delusion is another, but both work when you’re confused and wearing one gum boot, one sandal.*

* I’m aware this post is somewhat contradicting the previous subject matter of peaking too early. That’s what it’s like in this crazy, unpredictable world of weather watching. Subject tornado!!

London today is looking delightful. Yes, both above predictions have sun, seems correct, and 11 degrees, probably incorrect. Today calls for being moderately rugged up, not layered to the hilt. Just make sure you stand in the sun…



Sunday, October 17, 2010

Peaking too early

Those first pleasant, glowing sunbeams begin to inch their way towards your doorway. Your windows start to present their frosted, foggy panes first thing in the morning. All you want to do is  burst open your summer/winter wardrobe in a massive proclamation of the new season. 

Don’t! 

There’s such a thing as getting too excited, jumping in too soon, PEAKING TOO EARLY. 

Case in point, music festivals. In this instance let’s look at the gorgeous Queensland (nee Byron Bay) festival in Australia, Splendour In The Grass. Indeed it’s Splendourous and there is definitely grass, but what there shouldn’t be is this:


** Genuine Splendour In The Grass punters.

This festival in held in July. In WINTER. It’s cold. Sure, you get the glorious bursts of wintertime Aussie sun, but this is not the place for bikini tops, short shorts or anything sleeveless (much less TOPless). The need for arm cover in most parts of Australia extends through the winter months until you reach MAYBE October. Sleeves until October. I’m going to make bumper stickers.

For those of us in the Northern Hemp, I’m as excited about the upcoming winter as the best of them. In fact, it’s going to be my first genuine all snowing, all open fire winter. But I’m not getting ahead of myself with the layers. Unlike the GIRL I SAW ON THE TUBE WEARING EAR MUFFS.


** Not actual girl

That day I was wearing a t shirt.

I recently bought a new winter coat and now I have a rule. (Weather is all about rules... and high pressure systems.) No winter coat until it’s less than 15 degrees. And then no WOOLY scarf until 10 degrees. It’s about stages and I’m not peaking too early.

(I had a friend who had a 20 degree rule. Once it was 20, it was time for a shorts party. I now concur, but only if the shorts are of reasonable length.)

PLAY BY THE RULES. And all will be well.

London today: amazing, sunny, fresh, slighty chilly, makes you happy to be amongst it kind of Autumn day. Tomorrow? More of the same! Top of around 15 degrees, so the winter jacket remains firmly in the closet.  

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Weather & Fashion

Ladies (and gents, who am I to gender stereotype clothing?) word of weather/fashion advice. If there was ever one, NOW is the time to have the courage to grab yourself a pair of these pretties…



TIGHTS WITH HOLES. No, I’m not talking Courtney Love HOLE era rips (see what I did there?), but tights which I’m sure have some kind of fashionable name that I don’t know because I talk about the weather, not the catwalk. They sport deliberate holes.

Now, this isn’t for the looks (even though I know your pins deserve a good airing). Wherever you are, with the changing of the seasons, you get about a month gap when it’s about to become too cold or too hot, and more or less coverage would be needed. Embrace the change! Celebrate the delicious little gusts of breeze that will find their way to your bare skin through hopefully pretty, and flattering, cut out flowers. They also look great against a background of falling autumn leaves and budding spring frangipani. Frolic away. **

**As demonstrated in picture. See how much fun she’s having? That’s from http://www.misspandora.fr/?s=louise+fleur Totally French.


London today, disappointing. Went to bed with multiple sources quoting George Harrison (Here Comes The Sun! This also seems apt in a John Lennon birthday way), but woke to a view resembling a day time soap opera camera lens. Hazy, misty and hard to make out fine detail. 23 degrees my ass, multiple sources. Wear a cardigan.