Sunday, November 22, 2009


...was about when the cool change came yesterday... Living in Sydney has brought so many new experiences from wildlife to wild storms - I love it all (hmm, maybe not the wildlife part). But the last couple of weeks has introduced me to something I have never and am unlikely to ever experience in New Zealand...The 40C Day. And yesterday was a doozy with a high of 41C that seemed to last until, well, 12.53am. I swear. For my kiwi friends, 40C makes your nostrils burn, the wind is hotter than you can imagine, the only relief is airconditioning or submerging yourself in the water regularly. It's not the kind of day where you think, "Great 40C, lets get together with friends for a bbq ..." because it's simply too unbearably hot to function, let alone cook, let alone eat. It's the kind of heat that puts you in a bit of a fugue, lethargic and borderline tetchy, where anything that needs effort or explaining brings you to the verge of dangerous tetchiness. For me, finding the cutlery drawer overrun with ants was almost the straw that broke the camels back. But somehow I got through. The ants didn't though. Day time for us yesterday was the morning at the beach then home to the pool where at around 7.30pm we got the boys out and put them into bed, temporarily cool. Amazingly they crashed instantly with the heat. We weren't so lucky, and like many around Sydney spent an unbearably uncomfortable evening. For us this is intensified by the fact we have a "water feature" outside our bedroom window, although we think of it more as a chinese-water- torture feature with its maddening trinkle driving us to despair and requiring us to sleep with our windows completely closed (I am one of those poor sods who need complete darkness and silence to sleep, and in fact I was one of those people who would knock on doors in my PJ's complaining when neighbours were having a loud party - there it's out). However last night was so bad (think sweat dribbling off our faces in bed at 11pm), that I gave in and had the windows open which meant not only were we having to listen to the water-torture feature but we had more hot air infiltrating our room. What to do? Then hallelujiah, the mad rush of cool wind that signalled the change. We were lying in bed angling ourselves to get the most of the cool breeze from our open windows, like we had discovered an oasis in the desert, drinking in the cool air and finally attempting to get to sleep. That was until the wild wind started making the gate bang outside the boys room, which woke them up and required a parent to attempt a creative solution to stop the gate from banging in the wind. Picture me in minimal bedware designed for a 40C night, out in the dark and the wind at 1am in the morning unsucessfully attempting to shore up a gate with bricks, rocks and a wheelie bin. Solution..."you're just going to have to suck it up buddy and try and ignore it", thinking to myself "if I can ignore a water-torture feature and a zillion degrees in my room, you can ignore a loudly banging gate. At least it was cool.
Get the picture NZ friends? We're talking hot. And, hmm, we're not even in summer yet.....

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