Tuesday 11 August 2015

Feeling hot hot hot...

Hello from cloudy England!

Once again I am writing from the UK. I know, I know, this is supposed to be a blog about Italy, and in fact I fully intend to write about Italy. Today, dear readers, I am going to write about the recent heatwave in Italy. Here is a picture of said heatwave:

Well, more or less anyway. To the right, just out of view, it reads: CALDO INTENSO E AFOSO. A rough translation of this would be: BLOODY HOT

At the start of July I took a short trip home to the UK to see my parents' new house in Norfolk (which, by the way, is delightful). After a few days of rest, relaxation and eating lots of fish and chips, I was once again Italy bound. Now, I don't know about anyone else, but I always get cold on planes. Is it just me, or do they really whack up the air con to frighteningly cool levels? Anyway, in preparation for this I wore jeans and a jumper. Well done Amy. Two hours later, as I stepped onto the tarmac at Pescara, I was already plotting how I could sneak back onto that chilly plane. There was no air. You couldn't breathe. The heat hit you and smothered you. OK OK I'm being a tad dramatic (just a tad, mind) and I was wearing jeans and a jumper, the latter of which I removed IMMEDIATELY, not caring about my wildly flailing arms as I struggled to get the thing off amidst all the other passengers surrounding me. I wanted my cool, British air back. Oh, and did I mention, this was at 9pm? Uff.

Anyway, I naively believed (along with millions of other Italians probably), that this heatwave would last a few days, a week at most, then flutter off back where it came from and leave us with a nice 29/30 degrees during the day. Well, it didn't quite play out like that. 

Until the very moment that I got back on the plane to come back to England again for a longer stay, said heatwave did not cease. Not for one moment. For three whole weeks. Well, we did have a storm and a drop of rain (which I stood out in and enjoyed...much to the bewilderment of bystanders...possibly due to the fact that I was yelling YES! YES! ...ahem) but fast forward half an hour an the air had become even hotter than before. 

At first, it was just hot. Then the nights got hotter. No bed sheets, fan pointed directly at my face as I slept. Well, I say slept. 4 or 5 hours a night was a good quantity if I was lucky. Gallons of water. Three showers a day. And the SWEATING. Oh dear readers, simply SITTING became a sweat inducing activity. For a while I continued to apologise for it. Then I was too hot and tired to even do that. I simply couldn't wait to get back to England for a beautiful, cool night's sleep. I complained every day to anyone who would listen (and even those who wouldn't). Even the Italians couldn't believe it. (The heatwave, not my complaining. But probably also that too.) 

But for fear of being a negative Nancy (who, me?), I do wish to point out that it wasn't all bad. The small amount of time that I wasn't complaining/sweating/not sleeping/putting my face dangerously close to the fan, I tried my best to enjoy the gorgeous sunshine: trips to the beach, evening swims, mountains of gelato and several glorious sunsets. One evening I took a dip in the sea at 8pm and I have to say that it was simply beautiful.

Yep, heat makes me jump.

So there you have it. That's how a Brit copes (or indeed, doesn't cope. At all) with a heatwave. Seek out shade, copious amounts of gelato, and bodies of water in which to immerse yourself. Oh, and air conditioning. FIND AIR CONDITIONING. Let's just say that I was nowhere near my jeans and jumper for the flight back to the UK this time...

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