It never rains, it pours

Of all the strange idioms we have in the English language, this one is definitely at the very strange end of the spectrum. For those not native speakers, or just not familiar with the term, it really means when something bad happens, it’s not just bad, it’s really, really bad!

In some ways it is actually very strange that we use this expression in the UK as in meteorological terms, we are quite the opposite in the British Isles and in reality we are far more likely to have damp, drizzle, persistent rain or the odd cloudburst rather than continuous days of monsoon like pouring rain.

In the UK we actually seem to specialise in non descript weather and this is to our disadvantage. Go to a country like Canada where consistently the winter temperatures are acutely sub zero night and day and you will find it’s all taken in their stride.

Underground heated shopping malls, spectacularly efficient and monster sized snow clearing equipment and as a standard for most cars the capability to plug in ‘ car style electric blankets’ to protect the engines and remote control devices that allow the car to be started from inside your home to let it warm up (but keep the doors locked).

And it is not just winter weather. When we have a hotter than average summer, most of our public buildings and almost all homes will not have any form of air conditioning unlike their Mediterranean or North American counterparts. Result…during a heatwave people struggle to sleep or be productive in the workplace.

And if you think it’s just the weather, we struggle with seasonal variations of the environment. The UK rail system is notorious for problems with ‘leaves on the line’…somehow we are almost unique in the world that our trains struggle with mashed up damp leaves!

We are by nature a stoic nation and when the current generation grumble about these challenges, the parental generation is often quick to retort with…it was worse in my day!

Probably very true, but in the same way that we eradicated the black death and other historical ailments, our present day objective must be to facilitate our managing the challenges thrown at us rather than just grudgingly accepting them.

I think the fact that we are no longer wandering the earth wearing loin cloths and carrying a club demonstrates our success to date!

Time for an embrace…take #2

We had dogs visiting and I had time for an early morning walk prior to setting off on a work trip.

Our local reservoir is a mirror of the season and looking in the mirror what I saw was waves on the water whipped up by the stiff breeze, a hint of brown on some of the leaves and a little chill in the air.

Now it’s only August, but here in the UK as we encounter global warming we see a shift with warm weather spells from as early as April or May so in some way it’s no surprise in August to get a hint of the autumn that is waiting for us when we turn the calendar page at the end of the month.

My natural response to this is to bemoan the end of summer but on this walk accompanied by my daughter I was reminded to embrace the seasons for what they are….so true, and indeed we in the UK are fortunate to live in the land of distinct seasons…even though occasionally we experience all four in one day!

Enjoy each day for what it is.

Why this blog? Click to find out what started the blogs!

Anemometer..not an easy word to spell or say!

I have an anemometer in my garden, part of a small weather station and to be open and honest, I am a bit of a weather geek. In the uk we often get 4 seasons in 1 day so its actually quite good to have a measure of what is going.

However anemometer is a difficult word to pronounce let alone spell. In English we happily use words of Greek or Latin origin… in this case the Greek word for wind, Anemos. In German they make life a bit easier for themselves and call it a ‘wind messer’…ie a wind measurer. Germans not only are good at cars, beer and sausages…they have some great ‘say it how it is words’ this being one of them.

Anyway back to the anemometer and my ‘obsession’ with the weather. One day a family member on hearing me quoting a weather statistic (that admittedly was probably verging on the soporific) prompted an outburst of ….”Oh you are such a….” and then the silence of realisation that there is no obvious word in the English language that describes this overheated fascination with the weather.

After a little research the simple answer is that the English language doesn’t have one. Strange as we have words for perhaps lesser interests e.g. those embroiled in all matters French (Anglophile) or even booklovers (Bookworms) but for an almost national obsession…nothing!

Why this blog? Click to find out more….

And the winner is….

In the UK things have been somewhat hot over the past few days both politically and meteorologically. For those that live here or indeed follow international affairs it won’t have escaped your notice that we have just had a new Prime Minister elected . I use the word elected loosely as only a very small percentage of the population, about 0.1% get to vote on this . If this intrigues you , read more here.

Anyway with all this argy bargy going on and tv full of what may or may not happen next, Global Warming (or just cycles of nature..as both believers and non believers read my blog) has sent us the mother of all heatwaves this week.

Put these two together and you get a very hot and bothered nation.

So, imagine my delight to see that you.gov, one of our leading polling agencies, normally telling us what will happen in the next election or what people think about government policy or the state of the railways have put out a survey today…………… on ice lollies.

So how uncontroversial is that! Evidently not. A twitter furore has evolved and even challenges are now being made on what constitutes a lolly!

And for the record, why no mention of White Chocolate Magnum? Surely one of the world’s greatest inventions after the internal combustion engine, the internet and latte machiatto ?