It has to be said.
It rains a lot here.
It probably rains more than it does wherever you live. Which means that if you’re thinking about moving back to England, you need to factor in the rain.
I’m a little bit weird. I don’t mind the rain and I don’t mind cold weather. I look better in winter clothes. I feel more comfortable in big jumpers and coats and wellies than I do in summer blouses or frocks. And I like going out for a walk and being buffeted by the wind and then coming home to a cosy warm house and dry clothes. Something about that makes me feel very safe and contented.
But I freely admit that this is not normal.
I understand that some people love to sit out in hot weather, roasting their skin and cracking open another cold beer. I may not understand you people, but I know you exist.
And here’s the thing. If that’s you, you’re going to have a really hard time here. We get very few days where you can sit outside in such heat that your skin changes colour. In fact most of our days out are more of an adjustment than anything. (“Yes, I know we planned to go for a long walk but it’s raining really heavily so let’s do X instead.”)
Phil and I have spent several weekends like that recently and I admit it: last weekend, the weather even started to get me down a little bit. We had gone to Littondale, which is just an incredibly beautiful place. We should have been out of the car walking through the hills, but the rain was torrential and we just didn’t have the clothing. So we were trapped inside the car, only able to look out without participating.
And yet now that I look back on that day trip, I don’t remember that feeling of annoyance. I only remember the stark beauty of the scenery, and the lamb who wandered into the middle of the road, and the lane so remote that I had to get out and open a gate so we could pass, and the sweeping vista that suddenly opened up before us through the mist.
It was a fantastic day and I don’t know why I let the weather get to me. But I did and that’s my point. I am a person who doesn’t even like warm sunny weather and even I got a bit cheesed off with the rain.
Now tonight we went out for a 3 mile walk and one mile in, the heavens opened up. We walked the other 2 miles with rain lashing against our faces and slowly drenching our clothes, so that by the time we got home, we had to peel our jeans off and our supposedly waterproof coats were wet on the inside. This time I didn’t get cheesed off because we had plans for the evening. After a quick change, we headed off to a local pub to sit in front of a roaring fire and have a few drinks and some food. The contrast between the bracing walk and the cosy pub was heaven.
As I write this, I’m sitting at my kitchen table and the rain is gently tapping on the windows and I have a glass of wine and honestly I don’t think I could be any more content.
But I’ll say again. This evening was heaven to me, a person who hates warm temperatures and who locks herself indoors the minute the thermostat goes above 75 degrees F. Would it really be heaven to you?
Only you can say.