I am at a pivotal point of my time as a Local Tourist – I have left the windy Mother City and returned home to the British Summer.
Let me take this moment to point out a few reasons why Captonians have it so good. We have a myth in England, every year it is the same – we worship the memory of her, anticipate her sweet return, we know that any hardships in our lives will be resolved if only she were with us again – her name is Summer and she is a cruel cruel mistress. She will give us a cheeky wink in the early morning, a promise if you will, that she is here to stay. Sadly, by the time you have your wits about you and have gotten ready for an outdoor pool adventure, a picnic or even a quick tanning session she has fled the scene only peeking through the clouds every so often to check that you are still missing her. Though this lady is elusive, sometimes she graces this small Island with her benevolent presence and when she does the British public are amazing at making hay while the sun shines! Yesterday it hit tropical temperatures of 26°C and Clapham Common in London was filled to the brim with opportunist tanners. They even have a paddling pool for the children of the City. I must confess that I got a little sun burnt, in the British sun! Who would have thought?!
Though I might sound like I am dramatizing our British Summer my point is that a day of pure sunshine in England is like gold dust, whereas in South Africa it is taken as a given. Don’t think for a moment though that I am suggesting that South Africans don’t appreciate the sun – far from it! Cape Town is the sun worshipping Capital of the World and I could not love it more. Think of sun downers at the top of Lion’s Head or a full day of fun and frolics on Llandudno beach, I can’t think of anything better. Rather, my point is that England spends three quarters of the year waiting for the sun to appear so even when it doesn’t we still need to act like Summer is in full swing. We will take any opportunity to sit outside and have our iced coffee; one ray of sun and we will all be wearing our sunglasses and those slightly-too-short shorts. Finally, I honestly believe that there are more convertible cars on the small Island of Britain that in the whole of California and South Africa combined and you will see people driving down the motorway, roof down trying to ignore the intermittent drizzle that characterizes this wonderful Country!
While we like to think that we have it bad in the Cape Town Winter, I’d like to point out that it is not dissimilar to the British Summer. So rather than anticipate how windy and rainy it’s going to be, lets not wait for the storm to pass but rather learn to dance in the rain.