It’s summertime and boy has it been a scorcher. As the weather gods decided to cook Australia for their Sunday roast last week, with Sydney reaching its hottest day on record since 1939, we wanted to commemorate the uniquely Australian flavour that we bring to the season.
Image: Gem Van Heyst
After taking off the Ray-Bans and viewing the searing landscape without rose tinted lenses, we can admit that an Australian summer isn't always what it's cracked up to be. It's not as glamorous as we tell ourselves during those chilly winter months, with consecutive days of forty-degree heat resulting in us sweating in places that we didn't even know could sweat.
You're forced to strip down to only your undies in order to salvage air-flow, bad sunburn leaves you looking like a weird tomato-human hybrid, and there is no hiding from those hugging-in-all-the-wrong-places budgie smugglers - they're everywhere you look!. Please Tony, not again.
With multitudes of people flocking to the beach, you’ll find that your beach towel is now part of a towel quilt blanketing the sand, if you're even lucky enough to find a spot in the first place. Then there's those pesky insects; Aerogard are the only humans happy to have sticky flies and mozzies gatecrashing a cute picnic in the park. And, assuming you're not a Crocodile Dundee clone, you'll have to endure the terror of those slippery snakes sliding around your streets (plus all of our other deadly creatures who are lurking nearby).
However, minus all these details that leave some running for the airport in hope of exchanging the surf for carving up on Northern Hemisphere’s wintery slopes, this time of year is something a majority look forward to because in Australia we ‘do’ summer oh so well.
Throughout the year we wistfully reminisce about chlorine-scented days spent in the pool, blue skies, balmy breezes, barbeque smoke wafting through the house, baking hot bricks, the sound of backyard cricket…
And when December hits, we take a collective lungful of hot-air and relax. Ah, how's the serenity?
The three month long sun-fest represents beginning of holidays, Christmas, and, if you’re a lover of sports, a consecutive run of great matches of cricket and tennis.
"Chlorine-scented days spent in the pool, blue skies, balmy breezes, barbeque smoke wafting through the house, baking hot bricks, the sound of backyard cricket…"
Padding barefoot to the beach with the salty sea breeze fanning your cheeks, sun-rays making you squint, SPF 30+ seeping in and sunshine tingling your skin. The Australian summer is a season for all the senses.
Finding different ways to keep cool during the season is where the ingenuity of Australians really comes to form. Some opt for the traditional air-conditioner on full force, breaking out the Icy Poles and wearing the summer uniform of shorts, tee shirts or swimwear. While others take it to a whole new level with Ute trays being transformed into swimming pools with only a tarp and a hose (genius!) and the floating esky. Now that’s livin' Barry!
And while you float amongst your MacGyver-esque engineering triumphs, sipping a Gin and Tonic or sinking a beer, Triple J trumpets its best hits with the Hottest 100.
As the summer sun begins to fade, all we have left to recall these blissful summer times is a very nice thong tan, a sandy car boot and a new layer of skin. Now, we rug up and sit tight for the next nine months, until our beloved summer returns.
Katie Thomas has long been suspect for being the maker of crop-circles due to her professional wheelie skills. She is a major fan of vanilla milkshakes and enjoys gallivanting in the sun. Kate is loving this wonderful thing called ‘life’.