I simply can’t understand it. But some people just don’t like the summer. The heat, the sun-induced sweat, the colour of skin slowly turning from alabaster to gold. The midges. As a certified sun bunny with an identity crisis stemming from the absolute certainty that I was born in the wrong country I find it hard to believe there are summer-phobes out there, but there are. That brief window in the British calendar where the dappled sunlight caresses my pallid Vitamin-D deprived thighs is a tiny taste of heaven. So enamoured am I by the London summer I will endure grass-rash and heated smog strong enough to fell a nation just to enjoy a token Pimms on London Fields in that brief window when it’s not waterlogged.
But for many the summer sun is not a welcome visitor. For plenty of our fair-skinned compadres the thought of a hot summer evening strikes fear into their very hearts. And who’s to say that is anything but a good thing? Frosted autumnal leaves are gorgeous. That feeling of knowing you’re cosy in front of a pub fire with the rain lashing down outside? Quite simply glorious. Public transport is hellish, and sweaty is not sexy. The summer-phobes will be laughing their youthful looking socks off when the rest of us are 70 and wrinkled as prunes.
So if you are clinically summer-phobic, what to do when the sun’s beating down and everyone’s out chomping on soggy picnics? Well, we’ve got some fair ideas…
Go hide away in the Natural History Museum. If ever a Narnia were created for insatiably curious adults, it would be this. A labyrinth of aged bones, obscure scientific facts and astrological trivia, there was never a dull moment spent here.
Write letters. So consumed are we by the modern need to converse digitally by Tweet, text or email that we often forget the personal depth of writing or receiving a letter. I found myself the other day doubting my own handwriting style, (particularly my ‘g’s) as I realized I hadn’t written a penned communication longer than a postcard in about 3 years. Buy a beautiful fountain pen and find a shady spot and get writing. The delectable smell of fresh paper should be enough to seduce you into doing it in the first place.
Always wanted to play an instrument? Well then, learn to play one. If your time and concentration span doesn’t stretch to mastering the harp, at least you can apply some time to learning the harmonica, or, perhaps, the spoons! http://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/Harmonicas-/47078/i.html
Build a den out of bedsheets, blissful silence and hobnobs and read this. If nothing else makes you want to forge a life on the sunny road, this will.
Master the game of chess. For this you’ll need a summer-phobic partner… Perhaps a perfect excuse to ask that chalk-skinned hotty from the office on a date?
Visit an indoor swimming pool. While the sun-seekers descend upon London fields lido en mass, you’ll smarmily be able to enjoy any one of these (almost) all to yourself.
Paint. Even if you think your talent only extends to stick men and smileys, you’d be surprised at the therapeutic power of an hour of doodling and experimenting with watercolour. Put on your favourite band really loud (I’d recommend Jimi Hendrix) pour a glass of wine perhaps and get painting.