Monday, 13 January 2014

Everybody is Talking About It

The weather of course. Everywhere I go I overhear conversations about the weather & how awful it is and where has the summer gone (if in fact it ever arrived); the supermarket, the shops, the campground hosts, the tourists, the cafĂ© and the family!  Even the newspaper did a front page article on the stormy & unseasonal weather this morning. And to rub salt into the wounds I keep getting texts from two family members in Hawke Bay updating me on how flamin' hot it is up there!

We arrived in Invercargill December 15th, just over four weeks ago when we had about three days of fabulous hot weather & brilliant blue skies in that first week and then that was that!  Up until now I have made little mention of  the weather, I figured every area has it's bad days or occasionally a week or two of terrible weather at the wrong time of the year, but five bloody weeks of God awful weather is starting to wear thin. Rain on Christmas Day, rain on New Years Day & rain every day since except one. We have had constant rain and wind with the odd lukewarm sunny hour dotted in there now & again.

And the forecast for the next 10 days is all bad news too; rain is expected every day. There's a stalled high pressure ridge over the Tasman & the North Island (!!) that's holding our hot weather to ransom & allowing temperatures from the Southern Ocean to sweep up over us. And with single digit temperatures being nearly a daily occurrence we've been able to put our new diesel heaters to good use. And we're thrilled with them, they are very efficient and warm the van up instantly. We usually turn the bedroom heater on & let that filter through to the lounge & galley, it's less direct & drying and keeps the chill off the room, cutting in and out on thermostat.

At least it's not constant grey dismal skies, the sun does break through in between the heavy rain bursts. One minute the sun is shining, the next there's deep black rain clouds being pushed on through by gale force winds. We even had a couple of  blasts of hail today. What next? Snow? We have had the side of the fifth-wheeler in overnight (and during some of the more windier days) more times in the last couple of weeks than in the whole of last year. Today the van is getting buffeted about constantly, just awhile ago a violent shake sent my drying dish pile into the sink! And we are relatively sheltered here in an inner city camp ground, I can't imagine how it would be if we were out on the coast somewhere.

I took this photo of our deserted campground this morning, there were no tents overnight and just a couple of sleeper vans & one motorhome which had left early. All that's left is us & three of the semi-permanents which are occupied down the back.

I was expecting nobody to arrive with tents this evening, the gusts have been gale force but around 4pm four guys & a separate couple arrived and started to set up camp. More entertainment for us as the wind snatched tents away and made it very difficult for them to get them up.

And not 5 minutes after the last one was up and pegged to the ground the heavens opened up and the tents were blasted with torrential rain followed by hail! They all made a mad dash for the lounge and that's the last I've seen of them. In the meantime the tents are getting pummelled, well the 3 at the front are, the two at the back are protected a little by the shed. Wise people.

While the weather has been an inconvenience, we actually haven't found it to be too much of an issue, that was until the last day or two when the winds have been constantly gale force. Sure it would have been great to have had fine sunny days to share with the family but whenever there has been a break in the rain we've done plenty of walks around the city. And we've had the kids overnight again (Ruby told her Dad that she played with a girl who spoke Germany), taken them to the pictures, and been around at their place for dinner a few times. 
Plus all the down time has allowed David to get my new laptop up and running. David's old laptop(which used to be mine) finally bit the dust and because he has his iPad, I get to have a new laptop & he gets my old one (again) Cool eh? Of course he has had to shift all our programmes & information from one to another to another.
So now I am working from my new HP 17" HD i7 one terabyte super doper laptop computer! Great for processing my photos. Which saves me from screaming at the rain fade on TV!!

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