Well here we are in July and embarking on the second half of the year. Can you believe it? Where did the first half of 2016 go?
In Britain, we’re also a third of the way through Summer. This year we’re yet to hit the sweltering heights of last year’s temperatures but we have had a goodly swathe of low to mid twenties days (that’s in Celsius of course) which have been the perfect excuse for lunches in the park and lolling about on the patio.
But over the last few weeks, the weather has become somewhat schizophrenic – full of yoyo-ing temperatures and dry days fractured in the blink of an eye with intense, heavy downpours. Just this morning, I wandered over to Homebase in the warmer-than-expected sunshine (I was thinking that I may have over-egged my outfit) only to emerge 15 minutes later to big fat drops of teeming rain (and feeling
smug grateful that I had my umbrella). Five minutes on, the sun had emerged again. And it was a repeat affair this afternoon. I was ready for it though and dashed outside in time to rescue the washing.
There is something about this rain that reminds me of living in Melbourne. It’s mercurial and torrential and insistent. There’s no polite drizzle but rather a spate of sudden downpours that overflow drains and splash up from the pavement to dampen bare legs and trouser hems. And there’s that peculiar, distinctly rainy smell just as the heavens open that lingers a little once it’s over.
Yesterday was the first of the month and therefore time to turn to a new page on my wall calendar. It – the calendar I mean – was a Christmas present from Mum (& Co) and contains a series of black and white images taken by Aussie photographer Matt Irwin. His pictures capture the Melbourne beyond the postcards – they celebrate her moodiness, her light and her spirit. With the gentle touch of his camera lens, he shows me the Melbourne I love.
July’s page shows a couple huddled beneath the curves of their umbrella as they stroll past the National Gallery on St Kilda Road, the wet pavement glistening beneath their feet.
It’s Melbourne, shining on a rainy night. It was perfect, I thought.
And I smiled.