Thursday, July 20, 2006

Oh hello Mr. Sunshine. Where did you come from?

I haven't been able to write much on my blog for the past week or so as the internet connection at home is down. Strangely, the chav (English for bogun) flatmate Dean has recently purchased a laptop to get online, but swears black and blue that he has had nothing to do with the broadband now not working - 'Holy Coincidence Batman'. Dealing with this guy is like dealing with a six-year old, however at least the six-year old bathes and brushes his teeth when told to.

Another reason for my lack of communication is the weather. Every night I have been coming home and sitting in the corner of the bath under a freezing cold shower, hugging my feet and crying. Well not exactly...
I've been sitting in the middle of the bath.

As you may have guessed London is basking in the greatest heat wave on record - well I think it is - but I do know that yesterday was the hottest day since records began in 1911. The mercury topped 36.3 degrees
celsius, making all us little Londonites swelter.

Most of you know of my hatred for intense heat (that being over 20 degrees), so bowling up to the tube at 8am in a suit when the temperatures are hitting 45 degrees + down in the tunnels, and are so hot some lines are shut because the tracks are bending, you can imagine my happy face. I actually managed to get a shot of a commuter queuing for the Northern Line yesterday.

For many of you in Aus you may be saying 36 degrees, well that's quite warm, but that's just a little above average in an Australian summer. Agreed, but we ain't in Australia anymore Toto.

For one, air-conditioners in England - rarer than 14-year-old virgins in Footscray. Most shops, bars, public transport and for that matter offices don't have ACs.

Second, London is a city of concrete. You know rush of heat you feel when you're at the beach and you step off the grass near the footpath on to the asphalt to cross the road, well that feeling is constant.

Third, there is no cool change that rips through the countryside off the ocean to bring relief. In fact the only ocean breeze that you feel in London is if a slight wind kicks off the Thames - and let me tell you, the only thing worse than feeling the spray off the Thames is smelling it.

You may think I'm joking about the heat, but as Simon of the shoody blog ( http://shoddyblog.blogspot.com) points out:

47c (117f) on tubes (before you factor in wearing a suit)
52c(126f) on buses
To put it into perspective, it is illegal to transport cattle at temperatures hotter than 27C(81F) according to European Union guidelines.

So I hope you are all feeling sorry for us in England while you enjoy a nice cool winter in the south. I know I'll be thinking of everyone in London in two weeks when I'll be lying on a Croatian beach enjoying the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic lapping against the shore with a cocktail in hand...

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