In most countries, temperatures of 18 degrees don’t qualify as a heatwave but in Ireland, we’ll take what we can get. It might be still chilly in exposed areas (in either sense) but we know how fleeting this is, and we’re making the most of it.
Some signs there’s a thing we’re calling a heatwave in Ireland:
1. The temperature clock in the car hits 20′, though possibly only because the car has been parked in the driveway all morning.
2. People post photos of the temperature clock on Facebook to show all their friends, who are experiencing precisely the same weather, how hot it is here. Communal bliss.
3. Slow-build tanning moisturiser is hastily applied to blue legs, although by definition, “haste” is not its thing.
4. Shorts and dresses are reeled out like they’re an everyday thing, and we all act as though we weren’t wearing winter jackets and boots a week ago.
5. Supermarkets sell out of burgers, sausages and chicken as the annual barbecue-fest begins and suddenly it’s perfectly normal to eat a dinner that only consists of meat.
6. We buy six different types of relish and salad dressing, open all of them, use them twice, then throw them out in four months time.
7. Seasoned red wine drinkers turn to white wine, or beer, or prosecco, or gin, or anything that can be considered “refreshing” and therefore acceptable and in fact necessary on a midweek evening.
8. Anyone with an open-top car spends the day driving aimlessly around, eking every last drop of use out of the otherwise redundant feature.
9. Every meal is eaten outdoors, even if it’s 9 o’clock at night and actually quite cold – we will not be beaten into submission.
10. It’s fine to eat ice-cream every day at least once (it is, right?)
11. We all get sunburnt the first day, because you’d hardly put on suncream – it’s Ireland, it’ll be raining in an hour.
12. And anyone from outside Ireland continues to wear jackets and boots, regarding us with a mix of confusion and pity.
I’m off to light the barbecue, open a beer, and find last year’s bottle of after-sun.