Jeff and I are from Texas. In 2011, Texas broke the record documenting more than 100 days over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. It was unbelievable how much heat there was. You couldn’t not use your air conditioner and ice was a commodity. (Okay, not really, but it felt like it could.)
What comes with heat is a lot of sunshine. Lots of direct, hot, blazing sunshine. I was buying a new pair of sunglasses every six months, and talk about a hot fashion item!
Then, we moved to London, and I think I have worn my sunglasses twice in the two months (to the day) we have been here. We are much more North than the southern state of Texas, so I guess this is where the clouds hang out on a daily basis. So the weather has been a big adjustment for us.
One morning, it will be raining and foggy, and by the afternoon, it will clear up, but the cold is still there. Now, there I go over-exaggerating again. We do get to see the sun sometimes, and we try to take advantage of it standing in its path to gain all of the vitamin D (vit-amin, rhymes with bit is how it is pronounced here).
We do believe that the English get their dower stereotype from the lack of sunlight. You never see a smile on people passing on the street They are expressionless or pushing past you in a hurried yet annoyed way.
In Texas, it is rather customary to greet everyone you saw, smile in the grocery aisles, and ask if they needed help with anything. Whether you were empty in your offerings was one thing, but at least you spoke to another person. There go days where I don’t speak to another human being despite being out and about the mall, gym, streets, etc.
But when the sun it out on its rare occasions you can see them sitting in the sun just like us acting as cats or lizards. This clip is a perfect example.
Another thing about the sun, though, not to digress, is actually how long it stays up and down. Again, we are very far north on the planet, so our definition of “normal” sun up and sun down has been completely altered. Go to this site and play with the month to see when the sun rises and sets. It’s insane.
In January, Jeff was leaving and coming home in the dark. The sun would rise about 8a and set about 430p. It has been gradually extending, so now in March, the sun will rise about 7a and set around 530p. It’s amazing what a month will do for sunlight. So now Jeff comes home in the dark.
However, there is the inevitable dark side (no pun intended) to this. Come summer, the sun will rise around 445a and set close to 930p. As someone who rises and sleeps by the sun, I’m a little concerned about my summer sleep habits.
Generally, you can relate to this. When daylight savings happens every March and November, people get in a tizzy over, “Oh my goodness, I’m having to drive to work in the dark/light? How strange!” Then we get used to it just in time for it to change again. Well, we get a gradual change each month which makes it a little less jarring, but going to sleep with the sun out will be quite strange and, well frankly, I don’t know how to describe it because I have not yet experienced it. Not going to lie, I’m a little worried.
What it will benefit though is when Jeff and I want to go for a run. We are both athletes, but we have been resistant to run in the neighborhood because we don’t like to run in the dark for safety reasons. (I’m not the most coordinated. See the previous post about tripping over someone at the Queen’s Dolls’ House.) So that will be nice going for an evening run with the sun still out to light the way.
We have had to get used to a lot of things out here, but we feel that is a big one coming. Everyone’s solution to sun deprivation, however, seems to be a trip to Spain. No need to say more, adios and hola Barcelona, right?