07 April 2012

British Summer: A Week of Sun

When I arrived in the UK last year in July, I was under the impression that I had come at just the right time to have some fun summer adventures. I couldn’t have been more wrong, as I was a few months late for British Summer, the rare few weeks when the weather is consistently beautiful. 

Last week, we had British Summer (the equivalent of Daylight Savings’ “Spring Ahead”). It was as though the collective process of the country setting its clocks back created some shift in the weather systems to bring on the rarity of sunlight and heat.

The temperature peaked at about 21, but it was perfect for a few days out in the sun. I visited the Nature Reserve, spent a few days strolling through the town centre and I had foolishly started to make more outdoor plans for the weeks ahead – assuming the weather would continue. Yet, again, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

We had a full week of beautiful weather before the skies converted back to their usual shade of saddening grey. It’s been about ten days now and the forecast does not predict any sun in the foreseeable future. I’ve had to don my winter coat the past few days, draping myself in the woollen fabric of disappointment (because I really wanted to spend a day at Tycross Zoo). 

Clear skies during my trip to the Attenborough Nature Reserve)
While what is considered ‘summer’ throughout the rest of the world is approaching, we can’t look forward to the same consistent combination of sunny skies and high temperatures. Like any other season in the UK, June, July and August are full of unpredictable weather and a fair bit of rain. The temperatures do rise to about 25 degrees, though, so you can break out your embarrassing shorts on at least a few occasions. 

While it can be pleasant at times, it certainly does not compare to a summer in Toronto. The skies turn that shade of blue that can only be associated with laughter and elation while temperatures soar above 30. You experience the joy of actually being able to put your winter clothes away in a box in the basement because you can be sure that the temperature won’t drop below 20 degrees.

However, I’m not going to miss being unable to sleep and/or breathe at night due to sticky, steamy weather. It’s almost worth the tiny summer we get in exchange for no snow or minus 0 temperatures during winter. Sometimes, the weather even brings a pleasant surprise (I remember wearing shorts to Alton Towers in October last year), so British weather isn't all bad. It just sucks a lot of the time.  

1 comment:

  1. I had mostly really beautiful weather when I was in England for a few weeks in May back in 2008. Fear not, this isn't the end!