I have said this before, but for any newcomers... you will never, in the summer, catch me complaining that it's too hot. Even if the summers get as extreme as the winters are threatening to, I may go and sit under a shady tree, but a negative word will not pass my lips.
Because I reserve all my complaining for the winter. I hate the cold. I don't like the rain or the wind much, or the fog, but if it's in a mildish context, then it'll do. But the cold, the cold is the ultimate enemy. It forces you shrunken and huddling into a corner, hunched and tense (whereas in the warm you unwind expansively), constricted by layer upon layer of clothing; it dries your skin and makes your eyes raw and your nose red and your face pinched; it narrows and narrows your horizons and traps you fearful of stepping away from the heat, out into the ice.
I am even getting fed up with not being able to go to work, although I am very fortunate in being able to work at home almost indefinitely - all I miss are the boring meetings - but it cuts you off from human contact too.
While this may make it easy for simple minded souls and the Daily Express to case doubt on global warming, the clue's in the name. Globally it's getting warmer, but not perhaps for us. It's getting warmer where it's already too damn hot, and wetter where it's already too wet, and warmer at the North Pole so the polar bears are going to starve, if they don't drown first. But it's getting colder here. That's our karma, I guess, for causing it all in the first place. 'We'll have the Gulf Stream back now, ta. You Brits never appreciated it anyway, always moaning about the bloody weather. Well see how you like it now!'.
And... if I have to be isolated, huddled in a tiny space by the fire, surrounded by ice, I wish that at least I could be doing it properly.
Winding paddles the right way first time
2 days ago