Well, that’s that, then: Corfu is over for another year and, sadly, maybe for another two years. With son number one graduating from University and son number two preparing to start, there probably won’t be a way we can fit it into our summer schedule. A summer in the UK awaits and I will have to remember how to spend the entire summer moaning about just how crap the weather has been this year and how we don’t get seasons anymore. I’m getting old, you see, and moaning and indeed obsessing with the weather is compulsory.
Although I am relatively old, I am afraid the “we don’t get seasons anymore” simply doesn’t wash me because in my lifetime, we have rarely had proper seasons. My lifetime experience suggests the variation of a theme, that theme being “unsettled”. Winter is cold and wet, summer is slightly less cold and wet. Autumn and Spring are versions of the above.
As a child, I was either taken to my mother to the Netherlands for the summer, or we went to West Bay, a harbour with a lot of caravans next to it. My recollections are anything but balmy summer evenings, strolling down the Coolsingel in Rotterdam, or happy days lying on the sun-baked beach. Quite the reverse, actually. West Bay I remember for having to traipse to the communal toilets, freezing my butt off, getting absolutely soaked. Yes, caravans did not have toilets in those days and when you had done the washing up, you had to empty a huge bucket which was underneath the sink at a communal dumping dirty water station. I didn’t complain too much about the crap weather, but my grandparents did.
You’d have thought my granddad , who came from Norway, would know better, but oh no: the entire day would be a endless diatribe about how bad the weather was. But not just any day: every day. It’s not that he wanted to do anything useful, mind you. I suspect he might have liked to have sat outside in a chair rather than sitting inside in one but his default setting was to complain. I can only imagine how much he would have complained if he’d remained in freezing cold Norway! As he got older, he decided the only way to get through Britain’s miserable climate was to stay in and light a coal fire. By the time he reached his eighties, that was all he did!
Moaning, the British disease, drove my late father to distraction. “All you Brits do is moan!” he used to say, and I have to say I think he had a point! He was very much a do-er. When he retired, the idea of sitting around, getting old and moaning was a total anathema. He volunteered for stuff, took up a musical instrument, cycled and a million other hobbies and things. Life is too short to moan about, he would say to me when I was moaning about something or other. Believe me, I can complain like the best of them. If there was an Olympics for moaning, I’d be in the British squad for sure.
So, I’m ready for the summer of 2016 when I shall have plenty of wet and miserable days to moan at. As I am British and becoming old, it’s what I am supposed to do!