When you reside in the United Kingdom, there has to be an acceptance (begrudged or otherwise) of the unpredictability of its temperate climate.
Our summers are unlikely to bequeath us sustained periods of sunshine. However, on the flip side, unless you live in Frank the butcher’s walk in freezer, winters are ordinarily milder than those of continental Europe.
An erudite acquaintance informs me, this relatively narrow spectrum of temperatures throughout the year is the consequence of Gulf Stream influences.
Originating in the Gulf of Mexico, this swift moving, warm current of water is the primary reason for the capricious but mild nature of the British weather.
This high maintenance meteorological behaviour was perfectly highlighted yesterday. During a 24 hour period, West Yorkshire was subject to intermittent exposure to sun, breeze, rain and snow.
One person who was really feeling the cold during yesterday’s snow flurries was a friend (I’ll call Den) who advised me he’d recently returned from a sunshine break in Tenerife.
As we stood chatting at a local store, through chattering teeth he “cheered me” with his indulgence anecdotes from a sun drenched sabbatical with his wife on the island situated off the north west coast of Africa.
He was glowing in his praise of the accommodation, which was situated close to one of the many volcanic black sand beaches that grace the Canary Isles. He couldn’t speak highly enough of it’s location, cleanliness and the good customer service of its staff.
He was also relieved the weather was an improvement on last years early spring break, when he spent two hours in Frank the butcher’s walk in freezer.
Being a chap who enjoys his food and drink, Den made full use of the ‘All Inclusive’ status of the resort. After his first experience of this type of holiday package, he spoke of his appreciation for vacations where you can fill your boots with unlimited food and drink.
I don’t wish to appear envious, but I’m not sure I’d want to stay at a hotel where food is served in footwear not on crockery. To me it seems unhygienic and impractical. I’ve heard of chicken in a basket, but not bolognaise in a brogue or soup in a sandal!
He did have one or two gripes. Such as, despite the vast array of available refreshments, there wasn’t much evening entertainment on offer at the resort…… Unless you count watching him gorging on 10 burgers while downing 12 pints of lager as entertainment.
When I expressed concerns about the health dangers of his overindulgent eating, he told that to counter this risk he exercised every day……. He never stopped walking back and forth to the bar and restaurant.
Karen told me that throughout my chat with Den my utter disdain was written all over my face…….. I knew having “You greedy tw@t” tattooed on my forehead wasn’t a good idea!
Eventually, growing tired of stories from the pig trough, I told Den I needed to go pay for our weekly shop at the checkout. Proffering that I needed to get the perishable food home and into the fridge.
Bearing in mind it was colder where we stood than a fridges temperature, it was a rubbish excuse. I had to take drastic measures, though, as I was starting to feel nauseous with his lamentable litany of lettuce dodging.
So we wished each other well and moved ready to part ways.
As I started to push our trolley laden with food towards the checkout, Den exclaimed “Bloody hell, that’s a trolley full, Gary! ……. Have you ever thought about addressing your excessive food intake?”