Winter in the Subtropics
In the depths of a July winter here in Brisbane, Queensland, I am sitting with a cold nose and knees, contemplating warmer weather. Our winters probably seems mild to those countries with ice and snow. We have misty mornings then clear blue skies and by lunchtime some clothing layers can be removed for a couple of hours before the cold creeps in again.
The issue is home heating. Of course, I am not talking about the hermetically sealed grey boxes of the millennium. This older house is built like thousands of others—for the heat. We don’t have a fireplace, we don’t have insulation, we don’t have ducted heating, but we do have reverse cycle air-conditioning. Problem is the unit swirls the air around at the edges so it never feels warm enough.
Brrr! This is where an old three-bar radiator and a portable column oil heater come in handy for three months of the year.
So saying, we human beings are a contrary lot—I enjoy the wintertime.
Winter is more conducive to a brisk walk before settling down to writing. Cold weather calls for cosy pursuits. In a hot, humid summer, it’s more a case of lying around gasping after foolishly thinking some physical exercise like gardening was a good idea. The lush, rampant growth of a subtropical summer is a sight to behold but right now the garden lacks happy vegetation; the leaves are brown, the grass is sparse, the earth is hard and dry.
This morning the temperature is currently 8 degrees Celsius, the sun is shining but the air is freezing. Well, maybe not. We don’t really do freezing, more on the chilly side. I am going to make a hot beverage and pull on an extra pair of socks.
♥ Gretchen Bernet-Ward
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