Monday was a Bank Holiday, and the week before I unleashed a good 130 items onto EBay. This in mind, I decided to cover my bases and take the Tuesday off as well – that way if a significant number of items sold, I had one day to package them up, and another to actually migrate to and from the Post Office.
As it turns out, that plan was a stroke of genius on two levels. Quite a few items sold (about a sixth), so I had a small mountain to shift – and my local Postie just happened to be closed this week, so had to take them to the much less accessible shop further down the road. But that wasn’t that big a deal…because giving myself a 4 day weekend meant I got to enjoy 4 days of sunshine.
Yes, something resembling summer has finally decided to grace us with its presence. After month after month of snow warnings, we finally got weather that allowed me to leave the house without my coat, with full confidence it wouldn’t be missed. Been brushing the cobwebs off my cropped trousers and fancier vest tops – and still needed to change at least twice each day due to the heat.
To be fair, it’s not hideously warm. Think it hit 17 degrees or so in most places, and then it was a case of where you were. The problem with this charming city of mine is that the buildings are high and are perfectly designed to be wind tunnels. And though the sky may be blue, the wind was still coming off the ocean quite comfortably. Combine that with the high buildings, and you created a black and white street motif – one side of the road was chilly and dark, while the other was sunny and light. Needless to say, if you were willing to go into the shadows you pretty much had the pavement to yourself – the other side of the road would be mobbed. Just crossing the street felt like stepping into different countries – the atmosphere changed drastically.
When my letters were posted, I was sort of at a loss as to what to do. I made it to my Kettle Bells class, but the original plan was to go to the cinema or play a video game for the rest of the day. One look outside made me realise that was the dumbest idea I’d ever heard, and looked for a plan C. When the weather was warm at our previous flat, time was spent in the garden, but that’s one thing my current home doesn’t have. The Granite City’s biggest pull is off course the fact that it has a beach, but I decided to head in the opposite direction, and go for the sunniest spot in the city. My kitchen.
My flat is an old converted warehouse building, with the huge windows you normally see. In the winter that much glass makes the place super chilly, but when the sun hits them, the flat becomes a sauna. Nowhere is this truer than the kitchen, where the windows are in the perfect position to catch the sun when it’s at its highest. Even on cold days the kitchen gets a lot of heat. In this heat wave it’s not exception – we’ve learned the hard way not to leave chocolate or any ‘meltable’ substance on shelves or the counter, they liquidate very quickly.
So I plugged the Rio soundtrack into the iPad, grabbed a towel, threw it on the counter, and started sunbathing Scottish style through the window. Judging from the redness of my shoulders, the glass was no protection – I could probably make money putting sun loungers in the kitchen and advertising it as a solarium…
Course it did mean I didn’t really get any fresh air, so ended up going out for multiple walks as the sun set to try and savour as much of the remaining warmth as I could. Lived in Scotland too long to think it’s going to be here much longer, although can’t help but put my hands together and pray that it at least hangs around until this weekend. If it does, hoping to do what any Brit does when the sun’s out. Wrangle up her family-stroke-friends (or in this case my roommates), buy some disposable Barbies and have a barbeque in one of the parks. This weather makes me crave badly cooked meat like crazy, and think my curry and pasta loving roommates deserve to try a proper Scottish cookout.