Sun-soaked (but not today’s sun)

Today’s weather was so weird-it rained all morning and most of the afternoon while being pretty darn chilly, then the sun came out and shone brilliantly for a few hours, then it got terribly windy. I saw a rainbow! Oh England…I just never know what to expect with you. Also I now understand why people in England have so many different coats-at least it changes things up a bit in the wardrobe department. I should get a trench. Today I tried to organize my closet, and had to stop when I had the brilliant idea to put away my winter things (which is like, a coat and a wool sweater dress and a couple of sweaters that can ONLY be worn when it’s really cold outside) and then realized that due to the inconsistency of the English I basically need my whole closet available to me at all times. No “sandals/shorts/sundress” season here, no sir. And heavy sweaters in July? Could totally be necessary.  I want it to go back to how it was a few short weeks ago, but I think the chances of that are pretty low unless global warming rears its beautiful head again, leaving me to look at these pictures fondly and sigh. That was a really gorgeous couple of summery weeks we had there!

(purple on purple, yes)

(and this is Jon swimming in the sea, he’s so brave)

I’ll never stop believing in you sunshine. My love for you is endless. Come back soon, and bring the heat with you,if that’s your thing.

A Brighton Beach Picnic

Yesterday was perfect. The weather has taken a turn for real summer, with temperatures in the mid to high 70s, tons of sunshine, and hardly any of the cloud cover that is so expected around here. (Are you tired of hearing me talk about the weather yet? Maybe the Brits really are rubbing off on me!). So last night after dinner -I have now perfected my cashew (fake) chicken recipe, which is officially the only Chinese dish besides fried rice in my repertoire- Jon and I wandered down to the beach with a blanket and a bottle of wine a little bit before sunset.

Brighton beach at sunsetAhhh…..so nice. I want more evenings like these. And we were surrounded by many Brightonians (Brightoners? Brightonists?) with the same idea in mind. No surprise there!

Side story: My piano teacher that taught me from when I was a youngin’ until I was 17, quilted this lovely quilt for me as a high school graduation present. It’s awesome, and has been to many countries now. Thanks Mary, wherever you are!It really is amazing how much the city changes when the sun shines. And for this week at least, I’m really grateful to have a job that lets me take some advantage of the nice days, with quitting time being at 12:30 or 3, depending on the students’ schedules on a given day (or like the past three days-no work at all!). That’s several more hours to spend in the outdoors, and I am very okay with that.

Pink sky at night

Today the sky reminded me of the endless days that made up my life in the Marshall Islands, watching the weather creep so slowly toward us, the clouds and rain seemingly moments away from unleashing thick drops on our heads, relinquishing us from the constant heat,  but in truth they were so far away, over miles upon miles of ocean separating my little patch of land from the next patch, an impossible amount to contemplate, an amount that gave me unquestionable panic when I truly thought of it. The optical illusion of being on a minuscule strip of coral and dirt and sand and scattered trees in the middle of nowhere, the weather rippling so smoothly and impossibly fast across the water towards us, whipping the waves into frightening monsters along the coast and then again onward and away and leaving nothing but terrifically blue sunshine in its wake. Today the sky, so far away from that island home, was like that. And eventually it set, blazing shades of pink in the western sky.  

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Respite

The immensely sad pity party of a blog post of last week was apparently read by some higher ups in charge of English weather, as it was immediately followed by one of the most beautiful weekends we’ve had in months-very literally since the beginning of March. Three days of sunshine. Three. Glorious. Days. Some fluffy white clouds, blue skies, the whole thing. It wasn’t particularly warm (high 50s, low 60s maybe), but there was sun! And we went out yesterday with no coats! Forecasts are calling for the rain to return tomorrow, but this respite from gray was needed and much appreciated. I am grateful for the break.image

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Friday we took advantage of the upswing in weather to grab some drinks as the sun set. We ate dinner at home after work then wandered into Hove in search of a patio with space. (I’ve noticed-and I could be wrong here-that there aren’t nearly as many places with patio/outdoor seating around, and often if a patio exists it will be very small. Makes sense with the English weather! Beer gardens are a whole ‘other story though) We split a bottle of wine and were happy.

 Thanks for a good weekend Brighton! I needed it-message received.

A break from the gray

Today the sun came out!image

It was kind of miraculous really. Today was a bank holiday but alas, I had to work.  And I went to work… grudgingly. The streets were bare and the city looked like a ghost town at 8:30-the only other people out and about looked as miserable as I did. No one wants to work on a bank holiday! It was rainy and icky though-like it’s been for weeks-so it wasn’t like we were missing on a sunny, beautiful day off. However, as I finished up my  last class at 2:45-the sun made it’s appearance. And stayed that way. Miracle!image

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Jon met me at work. We spent the rest of the day in the sun (along with the rest of England). I took my coat off and soaked up that vitamin D and it was just what I needed-I don’t know how long it’s going to take me to get used to the minimal (MINIMAL!) time that the sun shows it’s face around here, but four months has not been enough. It may never happen. Apparently I need a pretty high allocation of sunshiney days per month, hot or cold though those days may be, to not want to die or curl up in a ball under a heat lamp. Tomorrow it’s supposed to go back to overcast, cold, and rainy. but at least we had a break. A beautiful half day of sunshine and warm (ish) temperatures!

Goings On

Today I :

-couldn’t stop feeling jittery with excitement about our big move in TWO DAYS.

-didn’t really pack like I should have/meant to do.

-was so pleased with the amazingly warm, sunshiney weather (65! What the crap!)! It brought two things to my attention-my normally very white skin has gone completely transparent since I moved here and began my life as a hermit, and my mood is way more affected by sunshine than I was previously aware. Seriously, I was ecstatic for most of the (gorgeous) day. Hmph.

Things I have learned recently:

-Bedding in the UK is like a whole different world. I nearly had an aneurysm shopping with Jon and his fam last weekend out of frustration with the total gap in communication-duvets (??)  instead of comforters, and they are just a giant pillowcase with buttons that you shove a duvet into, and no word for flat sheets and fitted sheets and any number of other things that I thought were complete non-issues. Lesson learned. Sort of. I mean, we have bedding now, so that’s that. My blood pressure has returned to normal. It’s the little things.

-There are lots of providers for gas and electric around here! Instead of just Columbia gas and AEP, there are soooo many to choose from. I guess it’s up to us to find someone we like. Or  ask our landlord who to go through. I don’t really know. Needless to say, it’s very different from what I’m used to, but I imagine the competition is for the best, rather than the monopoly that’s being run up in Ohio. Alright!

I also took the dogs for a walk this afternoon to soak up some more Vitamin D and take out the ol’ DSLR for a bit, which sadly I haven’t been using as much as I should. I’ve fallen for the siren song of cell phone pictures. So easy! So convenient! So crap, generally speaking.

Oh Lindfield, Hayward’s Heath…I’m going to miss your quaint little self a little bit.

 

Two days! Eeeee!