a few weeks back home (aka Summer? What Summer?)
04.12.2011 - 13.01.2012 23 °C
Travelling anywhere for a break ( a proper lazy holiday) frequently relies on sunny days that allow you to go at your own pace, sleeping in without fear of missing the sunshine that you aimed to a) lie in with a good book/glass of wine or bear b) walk in through charming vistas or c) enjoy from the pool/balcony/garden with friends. While the tropics tend to afford this certainty at the right time of the year I'm beginning to see that the rest of the world only offers uncertainty and a gamble on holiday times. Friends return from their holidays (Portugal or the Canaries, say) with tales of windy days that were too cold to spend by the pool or unseasonally early snow (New York this autumn). All wonderfullly exciting if that was what you were looking for...
My recent return home for a break over Chirstmas joined these tales of holiday weather gambles that didn't pay off. Unusually for December in NZ it rained and rained and rained. The temperature was a charming 22 DegC or more and glimpses of blue sky promised better weather if only these wet old rain clouds would just trickle past. If only.
Northland farmers were delighted that for once their prayers for rain before the summer really got underway. My dad is one of these. Holiday makers were less delighted.
With the air seasonally warm but the conditions less than encouraging towards outdoor pursuits I'm fairly confident in saying cinemas, shopping centres and other indoor facilities (the snow dome in Silverdale for example) will no doubt have done a storming trade. All you have to do is adjust your perspective and make the most of the chance to enjoy the local experience - go to the pictures, people watch in cafes, try the lingo in some shops and do a little gift purchasing. Come next Christmas you'll be delighted when you find you don't have to battle it out on the crowded and noisy High Street because you have already done your shopping (added bonus - your gifts are exotic and interesting regardless of their usefulness!!)
It would also be wise to make the most of all sunny and dry days by cracking on with your list of things to do safe in the knowledge that you can sleep in and laze about as soon as the weather turns.
That's not to say New Zealand no longer has lovely summer weather. Au contraire - you just have to head there Mid January!