It’s been a really long winter. Not just metaphorically in the sense that it’s been a long season without family and Spaghetti Factory Sundays. But I mean that it’s literally been a long winter.
I’ve gone for 16 months without a proper summer now. That might seem impossible… it should be impossible. But it’s my truth. A very sad, gloomy and (sometimes a little) wet truth. So I’m seasonally depressed, and also more dramatic than I used to be. But hey, I’m young and have 15 years of student loan repayments ahead of me. Holler!
Summer in Seattle unofficially ends the day after it goodwills itself to begin, which means it’s anyone’s luck to have more than a single month of dependably decent weather. It also means that the last time I had summer (I also haven’t “had” ranch dressing for 16 months) was in early September 2011 — enough that September doesn’t even really count in my personal diary of summer tally months, which I’m totally keeping as a keepsake story to share with my great-grand-kids one day about that time I thought winter swallowed me whole.
Summer in Seattle is actually so undependable that I nearly spent $3000 extra on my wedding for one of those big white circus tents made of tooling. Good ol’ leap-o-faith came in luck that weekend. So much luck, in fact, that I sweated my way down the aisle. That’s also back when I used to be skinny — something else I said farewell to with the sun 16 months back. God was on my side that day though (I do think He got our invite even if he didn’t RSVP)… think He knew I’d give him hell forever if my wedding day was memorable on account of downpour. Ironic that He could very well turn those tables on me one day….
That’s why I only say nice things out loud and do everything my boss and husband tell me to do. And I never run red lights or tweet things I shouldn’t… like politics.
In February, the hus and I moved ourselves to New Zealand where there is statistically something like nine sheep for ever one human. But the air quality is lovely here… not as many cars or factories to pollute it, I suppose. February is intended to be a “summer” month by New Zealand standards. And I really thought the Kiwis would be more dependable for such things like sunshine and magical hobbits than they turned out to be. “Oh, this summer was terrible” everyone told us. Awesome disappointment.
So we endured.
Until June when we decided Fiji needed us to visit. So we went because it’s one-movie-and-an-episode-of-the-Big-Bang-Theory-plane-ride away. And we had one week of summer in the middle of Fijian winter. But I got tan and my skin hurt and Colin drank beer. So it was practically summer. (Forgot to state earlier that we did have a small week of summer-like weather in Kauai for the lovely wedding of my social media soul mate in January before we moved here. But again, we faked summer — ahem, we owned summer — in the middle of winter by travelling to a toasty destination, which basically means we’ve been buying weeks of summer at hefty price for some time now).
It hasn’t been too bad… like two rainy days in a row, some wind, some bad drivers. Eh.
Until… (queue Katie Perry music) ten days ago when summer has decided she’s been in the closet for too long. It’s been absolutely lovely. It’s amazing the freedom and adventure sun brings with her. This weekend…
…we ice creamed because we golfed so hard.
And then yesterday we laid on the beach… in our swim suits… fat bodies and all. Just did it because hey, we’re not from around here.
The Kiwis are very particular about their sun. Since we’ve lived here, even without the sun shining, I’ve been warned the sun would get me like a hungry pit bull. Something about how there’s a special hole in the ozone layer right above us so New Zealand gets super unfiltered sun — like 1:00 am reality TV unfiltered. We sat out for a little less than two hours but can I just say, I feel excruciatingly whipped by the sun like it cowboy-ed me with it’s lasso of cancer-induced rays.
This morning I slept 30 minutes past my alarm because I told myself I had a bad night last night. Colin and I must have had a bad fight (not plausible since he was sound asleep next to me still) or I watched Stepmom or something because my eyeballs were tired. And the lids… they were nearly swollen shut — all signs of a last night’s cry.
Not so. I was just sunburnt. And the crease of my eyelids was burning like maybe a Girl Scout survival fire had come very close to them in the middle of the night without my knowledge. And I craved a slushy on my face all morning. I went to work today looking like I accidentally got spray tanned twice. Nobody’s whole face is as neatly coloured as mine is right now. And three individual people asked me if something was wrong with me today because I was looking a little tired and maybe upset.
No, I’ve just welcomed summer back to my life. Bring it New Zealand.