Winter Solstice Solace

Folks, last week was the Winter Solstice, so the seasonal wheel is now turning toward Summer; is it too early to break out the board shorts, sunscreen, and beach bucket?

Anyway, here in the northern part of the Southern Hemisphere (I think I’ve got that right?), we don’t really get what people on the wrong side of the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn call a real Winter.

There’s no snow, frost, ice or sleet, for which I’m extremely grateful, because there’s not one item in my wardrobe which would help me survive in temperatures needed for such weather events.

Plus, thermal underwear wouldn’t fit under my usual winter wear – shorts, t-shirt, cap and thongs (flip flops to our American readers).

But, as warm as our Winters are, I have noticed they’re getting hotter and shorter than the Federal Parliamentary sitting terms.  And, for a change, the science is backing me up.

Still, I don’t need some egghead waving a thermometer around to tell me things are heating up.  Because I have photos of myself swimming at the beach in June going back a few years. 

I won’t post them here for reasons of modesty, but trust me, they’re tucked away safely in my hard drive…. except for this one when my hair was shorter and damper after a mid-Winter dip: 

Granted, we only swam in the middle of sunny, cloudless days with little or no breeze, plus last year, thanks to Covid, the beach was free of hordes of migratory, pale-skinned southerners who would no doubt have been complaining bitterly about how hot it was.

While I’m not exactly unhappy about being able to enjoy a paddle in the depths of what we laughingly call Winter, I will admit to being a tad worried about it.

Because the summer season in these here parts are long and hot enough, and I genuinely don’t want it extended if it can be helped.

So last week, to celebrate the Winter Solstice, I meandered outside in my summer pyjamas and, as a newly minted ‘Carbon Neutral Pagan’, took great care not to set fire to anything to mark the occasion.

It paid off, because after ten minutes, my knees got a bit chilly, so I pottered back inside and went to bed. 

I took some small solace from the fact it was cool enough to leave the ceiling fan off that night.

Note: this column appeared in the Regrow Queensland e-zine last month. Check it out!

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