Archive for April 10th, 2007

I’ve had my first, shocking, oh-my-I’m-turning-into-them moment over the glorious Easter long weekend. I am turning into a Pommy-sun-loving-tragic, and I love it.

Over the gorgeous Spring weekend (since when was 18-24 so magic? Since it snowed and was dark – my standards have been reset!) I wore sandals, a sundress, a knee length skirt, etc – and had a chat about how nice “getting your legs out” is with a lady in my local.

So how exactly did this happen?

Back on the Thursday before Easter, I was chatting with one of my English flatmates about English food and English supermarkets. I made a list for him of all the foods and produce that are better in England – which is something like this:

  1. Bacon.
  2. Bacon again – the English really know what they’re doing in this department.
  3. Gü and Frü puddings.
  4. Losely yoghurt (refuse to use the word yoghourt yet.)
  5. Ale
  6. Cider

(Actually, this list is an alarming insight into what I’ve eaten in addition to regular healthy fare since I arrived – no idea why I’m loosing weight…. worms?) I’ve always been ready to add my voice loudly to something flippant, but back then I didn’t realise that the English have, rather stealthily, got this summer/sunshine down pat. Us Aussies have had it too good for too long!

Rules for Enjoying Spring & Summer in London, like a real Pom

1. Get your kit off whenever the mercury tops 18°C

    Do not waste a single drop of sunshine – if it is warm, or just warmer than it’s been lately, get amongst it. Take off as much clothing as seems suitable (see also #2 below) and lie, walk, bake, bask, display. Smile more, have an ice cream, wear daggy resort wear – who knows (even with global warming) when you will see the sun again. I have finally seen the genius of this rule – and stopped my silly, better-sun-will-come ways acquired back home. Sundress, Easter Sunday. Hot.

    2. There is no such thing as unsuitable for display – body or clothes.

      The Australian concept of certain parts of skin being too-pale, too-hairy and too-lumpy – gone. Missing this rule sometimes, but it goes well with #1 above, and is fairer. Sunshine democracy. But nothing excuses the lying around during lunchtime in boxer shorts, often with string vests. Nothing. Put it away!

      3. Only ever apply sunscreen once each day

        This Ozone layer is bang-up brilliant. It’s very hard to burn for me now, especially if SPF40+ or SPF50+ sunscreen is applied with brekky. No wonder so many Poms go the lobster look at Bondi – they have no concept of re-application. None required.

        4. Check to see who’s worse off

          Love this – the highlight of the weather on BBC London last night was not the glorious sunshine (relegated to item two by the following) – more importantly, most of Southern England was warmer than Spain, one of the most popular OS destinations for Poms. The references to Scotland/Northern Ireland (thankfully) aren’t quite as cutting or condescending, but generally these people are fiends for relative warmth, much like the relative happiness crew.

          5. Warmer weather makes cold snaps worse

            Lastly, because warmer-than-average days remove normal weather complaining (aka whingeing…), one is forced to save all this up – and go totally berserk during the cold snaps. It doesn’t follow that warm weather before cold is better than cold weather before more cold – even if it should. Thicker doona (also holding out on the word duvet,) pulling out the warmer coat, etc – just as tiring as you’d think!


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