Escape. Isn’t it what we all want in a holiday? Escape from the routine of daily life. Escape from the stress and rush of meetings, school runs, housework and commitments.
Especially in Summer we want to get away from it all, sit in the sun and sip wine. You might think, reading my blog, that I don’t have that need.
On paper, we have great weather -there is rarely a day under 25°C after late May. And we definitely have fantastic amenities to use in Summer. From pools and parks to lakes, vineyards and icecream parlours, there is always somewhere to go and something to do without it costing an arm and a leg.
But my feelings on Summer in Germany are complicated. I wrote about it a bit last year.
The trouble is the weather. Yes, I know, complaining about hot weather to readers who live in the permanent grey of the British Isles is a bit much. But honestly, it gets unbearable.
If it was ony the heat, I could take it. Above 36°C, I struggle, but I can just about cope. I have done it July after July, when the temperatures often range from 36°C to 40°C. I’ve even managed three pregnancies without falling to pieces. But it was close.
Speaking of close, that is the crux of the matter. Weather wise is is close, as we say in Ireland. Very close. Excruciatingly humid, to be blunt.
It is 11am and 28°C as I write. The temperature is set to reach 36°C later in the day*. The humidity level at the moment is 55% and the wind is 3 km/h. It is sticky but at a bearable level.
It gets a lot worse. There are days when we can’t cool down or dry off, no matter what we do. The house heats up. The office buildings heat up. Air conditioning is not a thing here, although we could do with it, at home and at work. Fans help, but not as much as we always hope they will.
On the worst of days everyone is irritable. There are no clothes that don’t stick to your clammy skin. Your make up melts off before you leave the house. Any skin on show is riddled with welts from the mosquito bites you get every night in your sleep.
And then there’s the itching. Itching that wakes you in the middle of the night, where you notice the high-pitched neeeeeeeeeee of the invisible lone mosquito who is trying to eat you alive. It keeps you from sleeping properly again and so you wake up irritable on another sticky, clammy day.
So forgive me for wanting to escape it all.
To Ireland and its overcast skies. To sea breezes and scattered showers, to sunny spells and a bit of a chill in the evening air. To a climate that says welcome home.
*Edit – It hit 38°C between 5pm and 6pm.