by Janet Howson
Storm in a Teacup
“It’s too hot for me, I like a bit of a breeze.”
“I can’t do anything in this heat.”
“I have to keep indoors whilst it’s as hot as this.”
“I just wish it would rain a bit to clear the air.”
“My lawn has suffered. It is completely yellow.”
“I can’t sit in the sun at my age.”
“I have to cover myself in factor 50 before I put my head out of the door.”
“The sun gives me a headache if I sit in it.”
“The heat exhausts me.”
“I couldn’t live in a hot country.”
“It’s lovely to get inside an air conditioned shop to get away from this heat.”
“I couldn’t believe it. I paid a lot of money to go to the Caribbean for the sunshine to find when I got back home it was hotter here.”
“The Central line is unbearable in this weather.”
“I pity anybody who has to work in this.”
“I just sweat all the time. I have had to have three showers a day.”
“What a miserable day.”
“What’s happened to the beautiful weather?”
“I cannot believe it’s raining in August.”
“It’s gone so cold. “I’m back in my woollies and long sleeved shirts.”
“We hardly had a summer and now we are back to grey and miserable again.”
“I would move abroad tomorrow, somewhere warm, if it wasn’t for the family.”
“Those black clouds look ominous.”
“Where has the sun gone?”
“It looks like the rain is settled in for the day. No point in going anywhere in this.”
“I cannot stand this cold. I was made for a warmer climate.”
“Good thing I always carry an umbrella with me.”
“This wind cuts into you like a knife.”
“It wouldn’t surprise me if we didn’t see the sun again this year.”
“It is always disappointing weather when the kids break up for the summer holiday.”
“This weather is why we always go abroad for our holidays. You just cannot rely on it here.”
“I always feel depressed when it’s grey and rainy like this.”
“The snow looks pretty for five minutes then it turns into sludge.”
“I’m thinking of getting a sun lamp.”
“I couldn’t sleep last night with that storm going on.”
“I have bought a thicker duvet. I was still cold with our old one.”
“Is it me or are the winters getting harsher?”
“I can’t even feel my fingers I am so cold.”
“I can see my breath in the air and it’s only October.”
“It just makes you want to stay indoors and turn the central heating up.”
The British obsession with the weather. It introduces our conversations and gives them a reliable subject that everyone can contribute to. It provides a safe comment to be exchanged with strangers you feel obliged to pass the time of day with. It is a known point of dissatisfaction and annoyance to the habitants of this Island. It causes no one any offence as it is only controlled by nature. We all understand it. It needs no qualifications or academic prowess to join in the debate about it. There is a camaraderie in our suffering of it. We are free to join either side: those who love the heat and those who prefer it cooler. It gives us an excuse not to attend an event we didn’t want to go to anyway. It is a free pass to indulgence in hot comfort food, hot toddies and nights in front of the television watching indescribable trivia sharing a box of chocolates.
We include the weather in numerous of our well known sayings:
It’s raining cats and dogs.
It put the wind up me.
Save it for a rainy day.
A frosty smile.
Run around like a whirlwind.
A flood of tears.
Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight. Red sky in the morning, shepherd’s warning.
As pure as the driven snow.
Brass monkey weather.
It came like a bolt from the blue.
It never rains but it pours.
Steal my thunder.
Storm in a tea cup.
Know which way the wind blows.
One swallow doesn’t make a summer.
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness.
Then there are the songs with weather conditions in their titles:
“It’s Raining Men.” The Weather Girls.
“Here comes the sun.” The Beatles.
“The Flood.” Take That.
“Why does it always rain on me.” Travis.
“Purple Rain.” Prince.
“Candle in the Wind.” Elton John.
“Heatwave.” Martha Reeves and the Vandellas.
“Mr Blue Sky.” ELO
“Singing in the Rain.” Gene Kelly.
“You are the Sunshine of My Life.” Stevie Wonder.
“Walking on Sunshine.” Katrina and the Waves.
“Here Comes the Rain Again.” Eurythmics.
“Beautiful Day.” U2
“Riders on the Storm.” The Doors.
“Good Day Sunshine.” The Beatles.
“Rain Fell Down.” The Rolling Stones.”
“A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall.” Bob Dylan
“Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” Judy Garland.
“Set Fire to the Rain.” Adele.
Do we suffer as a country from a deviant form of OCD (Obsessive Climate Disorder)?
It is left to the great bard to finish off with a quote from “Twelfth Night” one of many that include weather references.
A great while ago the world begun
With hey, ho the wind and the
But that’s all one. Our play is
And we’ll strive to please you
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