When people discover I’ve recently relocated from the South of France to England, they all say the same thing: WHY?!
I tell them I came back because of the weather.
Really?! they gasp. You came back for the weather?!
Yes, I reply. I’m a masochist.
I’m writing this at my desk in my living room, the TV on in the background showing the only match to be playing this afternoon during the second, and final week at Wimbledon, the famous grass court tennis Grand Slam competition. Why only one match? Because, naturally, it’s raining heavily and there’s a thunderstorm. The electronic glass roof over Centre Court is ensuring the game continues in spite of the weather, though it comes to something when the VERY NOISY GRUNTING!!! of the female participants on every shot can’t be heard above the torrential downpour making its presence heard on the hard glass covering. Poor dears, I think it’s confusing them.
Anyway, to clear up any misunderstandings about the weather here, there now follows the NotNiceEtoile Guide to the British Summer.
THE NOTNICEETOILE GUIDE TO THE BRITISH SUMMER
* Rain is not merely rain. It’s more important than that. Just as the Inuit at the North Pole are reputed to have 47 different words for snow, the Brits have 5,863 swearwords for rain.
* Common or Garden Rain falls on gardens and commoners. The latter includes everyone in the country, other than the 27,934 people who are the most important members of the Royal Family and who are paid for out of the Civil List. (POINT OF INTEREST: Garden Party Rain falls on commoners when they are invited to Garden Parties at Buckingham Palace. It does not fall on the the Queen – who is not a commoner, she’s the Queen, duh – because she shelters under one of her horrible little corgis. So now you know the point of those vicious little dogs).
* Wimblerain and Bank Holirain differ from each other only in the fact they’re both completely predictable. Which, predictably, means no point of differentation whatsoever.
* Showers are completely predictable in their total unpredictability. Which is either predictable or unpredictable, depending on whether you’ve gone out with an umbrella or not. Or not.
* Drizzle is what it does when it’s not raining.
I hope this explains the mystical quality of the British Summer. (Which is called mystical only because the ‘Summer’ part of the British Summer is myssing.) Don’t feel sorry for us, we grew up in the place, it’s part of what makes us British.
(When’s the next flight out of here???)