Living on the other side of the earth, we naturally have summer when those at home (them European ones) have winter (I cannot tell you how uninteresting I find that past sentence… oh well, it does the job). For those of you who haven’t looked out the window or been outside for the past few years, I can inform you that it currently is winter in Europe and summer in Australia. They are cold, we are warm. And they hate us.

Warmth has some sort of religious status in Europe and many friends are crying – “oooooh I wish I could have some of your heat”. Naive fuckers. I have talked about my dislike for the heat before, but to enlighten the Europeans I have decided to describe what a regular morning is like for me.

I wake up a 6 am because by then the sheets are burning, smelly, sticky, disgusting, I am dehydrated and excruciatingly tired of listening to the fan circling around in the ceiling. The dehydration generally means I begin the morning by having diarrhea (if you hadn’t caught that this story was not going to be pretty… well catch up). The routine then is to blast up the aircon in the living room, get the temperature down to 26 celsius and drink water. For two hours. Recently I discovered that I can speed up the recuperation process by drinking blue Gatorade. Ask yourself quietly what you would answer if at 6am I said “Good morning, would you like a glass of Gatorade?” (Go fuck yourself is not an inappropriate answer).

Well here we are.

When it is time to leave, this is the view – and no the lens did not go foggy, there is just a bit of humidity in the air. Like walking into a wall.

We jump from aircon to aircon for the remainder of the day, but in between we sweat through every pore of our body. Every pore. All over. You don’t need to move to make it happen. It just does. You sweat through your arm, not just under it, through it.

Honestly, apart from the mornings, it is OK. It is manageable, it is survivable, we are fine. But it ain’t fucking great. It is not “ooooohhh I wish I could be at your place instead of here”. When Cairns people want to know what winter is like at home, I tell them that it is like walking into the deep freezer in the supermarket and staying there for hours (if you like, you can play with the frozen veggies while you are there, to keep you active and warm). The only analogy to I can come up with for Cairns is a steam bath/sauna… uninteresting and no veggies. But think of yourself sitting in a steam bath with an appropriate amount of clothes on, a cub of coffee, a newspaper, picking up the phone after two hours and talking sense. I want you to keep that picture when you are considering how lucky we are in January.


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