Thursday, 31 March 2011

The Coming of Spring, or Why it Wouldn't be Forks.

fter you've been in Britain for more than a week or so you begin to realise that, to the British, weather is really, really important. It's a different kind of importance in comparison with those who wake up each morning prepared to toil in life threatening temperatures, but I'm sure our entire civilisation is built on the famous British weather! Instead of saying 'hi, how're you?' if you meet someone in the street it's far more common to say "lovely weather" with a sarcastic roll of the eyes at the overhanging clouds, or "enjoy it while it lasts" on days that are sunny.


Now, when I was in America on those few days in the Summer months when it rained, it was like the day was cancelled: "that's it, everyone inside, close your blinds and pretend it's night time already". Not so in England: here you just have to grab your trusty umbrella (which you probably don't have on you, as it's raining and that's sod's law) and get on with it: bad weather can't stop the British! Similarly for cloudy days: I will always maintain that the main problem with the Twilight books (appart from the appalling... well, don't wish to offend any fans!) is the fact that the main vamp family in those books move to live in an overcast town in America to escape the sun; clearly you'd just move to the UK is that was your aim!

Harlaxton Drive

If there's one thing to be said for the British weather, the ever-changing cover does make for dramatic pictures...


Any that on those rare sunny days, we flock to the beach as fast as we can to lie spreadeagled in a patch of sunlight no warmer than the average Spring day in Evansville! Quick everyone, absorb Vitamin D!

Skegness Beach

Because of this ever changing weather it may be more obvious why we celebrate the arrival of Spring with maypole dancing, lambs, daffodils, giant chocolate eggs and all that good stuff: you've got to celebrate leaving the cold, wet weather behind you and embrace the onrushing Summer, at least until it hits 80 degrees farenheit and we all start dying from the heat... A maypole dance (shown below) is more typically danced on May Day (May 1st) but for us is takes place on the Spring Equinox: typically for England it was raining so this dance took place indoors! The ribbons are wrapped around the pole in different patterns, depending on the style of dance.

So yes, potential students, the weather is British. It will be cloudy, sunny, rainy and everything in between, pretty much all the time you're here, whenever you come. Bring a warm coat and a pair of shorts because you'll never know when you'll need them. One thing's for sure, you'll never complain about American weather again!

"Here's to the Great British Summer:
Music festival-ing, mixed mud wrestling,
14 degrees, knobbly knees,
Catching the rays,
The Big Squeeze,
Traffic jams, handheld fans,
'The hottest day since records began'
Yes, we'll complain it's too hot,
We'll moan when there's showers,
But it's glorious, lovable, eccentric, magnificent...
...and ours."

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