Being a True Brit – well, three eighths True Brit, blood wise – I know it is the law that I have to keep referring to the weather. There’s good weather – warm sunshine – and bad weather – everything else. Billy Connolly once tried to simply refer to the weather as the weather. He had no chance at all, did he, even though he was right. Literally. So, it’s for the warm weather that I’m here in Greece. But I am reading that soon it’s going to be warmer at home.
According to certain weather forecast sides, the UK will be sweltering in 31c by Friday, a stonking 88f, while here in freezing Paxos it will be a mere 26/27c. The on-line papers announce the forecasts with a smug swagger, as if to say “You’ve paid ALL that money AND it will be warmer at home! SUCKER!” And you know what? I couldn’t care less.
When we first ventured out to the pool this morning, it was around 25c. With no breeze to speak of, it felt bakingly hot. I’m thinking it was a few degrees higher by mid afternoon but nothing unbearable. Mid to high 20s suits me just fine.
Once, for a brief moment in Corfu, we felt what 40c was like. That’s once in 25 visits over 37 years, almost all of which were in July and August. It was horrendous. I’d have preferred anything, even Britain’s ‘bad’ weather. Mostly, the really hot stuff has been between 29c (84f) and 36c (99f) and the upper end of the latter is more than hot enough. And these, let’s not forget, are shade temperatures. But some people do like to tell you theirs was the hottest holiday yet. “Even the locals said it was too hot.” Did you ask all of them, then?
Sometime ago, we were at a local football game and an acquaintance told us the family had just come back from Ibiza. “48c it was most days,” he said. “How did you cope?” I asked. “We just went to the bar or had a dip in the pool.” 48c, in the shade, would be around Death Valley style. No bugger would leave their air-conditioned room in that. But he is not unique. Whenever you talk to people who have been abroad, some bright spark will tell you it was 50c every day and when you check, it was actually nearer 25c.
Anyway, 31c in Britain will be horrible. It will be clammy and sticky and you’ll complain as much as if it was pissing down with rain. A dry 27c in Greece with a gentle sea breeze is hot enough, trust me.
In a week or so, we’ll be back at home for more bad weather or weather as it’s actually known. Let’s face it: Britain is the one country where you don’t have to pretend it’s hotter than it is. For one thing, no one would believe you.