Tag Archives: weather

No Rain in Spain

14 Aug

photo (13)The Danes and the British have in common the innate compunction to complain about the weather. When I first moved to Denmark, I was quite surprised to hear how negatively the Danes spoke about the Danish summer because I found it to be far superior to what I was used to in Scotland. I still think that overall the Danish summer is better than the Scottish summer, but over the years I’ve started to grumble along with the best of them.

Clouds

There are summer days in Denmark that are the stuff of dreams. Fantasies about brown legs and sandals, spending entire days outside and losing track of time really do come true, and I even had (yes, past tense!) a tan to prove it. On the other hand there are considerably more days where the sun goes into hiding, and leaden skies descend over little Denmark, disgorging sheets of driving rain that threaten to extinguish even the most resilient spark of summer optimism.

photo (12)

Then again, there are the days in-between that are neither one thing nor the other – days that the Danes would describe as being leverpostej (leverpostej corresponds roughly to the English ‘blah’). Despite the temperature lurking around the mid to high teens, it’s usually cloudy with recurrent rain showers and enough of a breeze to irritate even the most stoic of garden-dwellers.

Harvesting

The farmers, however, seem to have known all along that this summer would be rubbish and have been busy harvesting since July. Unfortunately, since the farmers tend to work when conditions are dry, their operations regularly collide with my own sorties into the garden. The stoor thrown up by their combines is fanned by the wind into towering clouds of dust and then transported directly into my rosé.

photo (10)

In short, the Danish summer weather is predictable only by its unpredictabliity. This, I think, explains the mass exodous of Danes to Spain or Greece, or anywhere, really, that has guaranteed sun for an extended period of time. For the rest of us who have either by chance or design remained in Denmark, this summer has been something of a damp squib and the early arrival of autumn is serving only to compound our despondency.

Thistles

It’s not all doom and gloom, though. The good news is that according to Danes autumn is the optimal season for hygge, and we staycationers are getting a good head start with the cocoa and slippers. So if you happen to be one of the lucky ones who managed to get away for a bit of sun this summer, don’t be surprised to find that IKEA has sold out of candles and blankets by the time you return.

 

Brune ben og brok

Danskerne og briterne har det tilfælles, at de begge er født med, at de føler sig nødsaget til at beklage sig over vejret. Da jeg flyttede til Danmark, var jeg overrasket over, hvor negativt danskerne udtrykte sig om det danske sommervejr, fordi jeg syntes, det var overlegent i forhold til det, jeg var vant til i Skotland. Jeg synes stadigvæk, at det danske sommervejr i det hele taget er bedre end det skotske, men i årenes løb er jeg begyndt at brokke mig så godt som nogen.

Fishing nets

I Danmark findes der sommerdage, som drømme skabes af. Fantasierne om brune ben, bare fødder og det at tilbringe hele dagen udenfor bliver til virkelighed, og jeg havde endda en solbrændthed til at bevise det! På den anden side er der markant flere dage, når solen gemmer sig, og der sænker sig en grå himmel over lille Danmark. Hertil kommer så meget regn, at selve den mest modstandsdygtige gnist af sommer-optimismen bliver slukket.

photo (11)

Men igen er der de dage, der ligger imellem, som hverken er den ene eller den anden ting: Danskerne beskriver dem som ‘leverpostej’, og briterne kalder dem for blah. På trods af at temperaturen lurer omkring de 18 grader, plejer det at være gråvejr med tilbagevendende regnbyger og tilstrækkeligt blæsevejr til at genere selv den mest stoiske have-entusiast.

Det ser dog ud til, at landmændene hele tiden har vidst, at denne sommer ville være noget værre møg, og de har været i gang med at høste siden juli. Fordi de plejer at arbejde, når det er tørvejr, falder landmændenes aktiviteter desværre jævnligt sammen med min egne togter ud i haven, og en del af støvet fra mejetærskerne ender – til min forargelse – tit i min rosevin.

Crop

Kort sagt kan det danske sommervejr kun forudses til at være uforudseeligt. Den gode nyhed er dog, at ifølge danskerne er efteråret den hyggeligeste årstid, og det betyder, at vi ‘staycationers’ er langt foran, når det kommer til at drikke varm kakao og tage sutskoene på. Så hvis du er en af de heldige, der nåede at tage sydpå til solen denne sommer, så vær ikke overrasket over at finde ud af, at IKEA har solgt ud af stearinlys og tæpper på det tidspunkt, I kommer hjem.

Berries

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It’s no weather for spring…

20 Mar

Bridge“Beware the Ides of March,” said Shakespeare. “Beware the snowstorms this week,” said the Danish Meteorological Intsitute. We are now safely past the 15th of March so the first warning can now safely be discounted, but the second is still very much in force.

Garden 1
Garden 3

We have officially entered spring but the birds and I are a bit confused: they are nesting and I am spring cleaning. Natrual instinct can’t be denied but it’s taking place against a backdrop of snow/wind/sunshine/warmth/cold. In throwing open the windows, instead of fresh air I’d be letting in a raging blizzard. It just feels a bit wrong. I do take comfort in the knowledge that I’m not alone, though, as even the ice-cream shack has opened – albeit a little prematurely, perhaps.

Skovsøen

There was one day, not long after the official beginning of spring, where it was actually properly warm and felt like the beginning of things to come.

Goldfinch in treeCharged up by the large amount of sunlight, I cleared out the greenhouse a bit and even felt sufficiently confident in the continuation of the good weather to put the pots outside.

Greenhouse1

Greenhouse2

Mostly it was just an excuse to be in the garden and enjoy the flowers.

Erantis carpetBack in the autumn I spent hours planting bulbs with the hope that come spring I’d have carpets of lovely flowers to look at. Due to the topsy turvy weather, the carpet is unfortunately thus far more like a patchy collection of threadbare rugs.

Gronirsk in crocusesI am, however, a hopeful soul, and I know that even if things don’t really work out as I had originally intended this year, the bulbs are there now and will be more than ready for next year.

Crocus carpet

Sadly, the good weather didn’t last and the constant shifts in weather and season have left me in no-man’s-land: I can’t properly get started with spring nor finished with winter.

Erantis frostWith only two weeks left to go before the clocks go forward and summer time officially starts, I’m starting to think that spring will in fact have been completely sprung over this year.

Thermometer warm

Thermometer cold

I know I’m the one who loves winter above all the other seasons, but I am craving the feeling of warm sunshine on my skin, even if it’s through a protective field of sunblock factor 50. In the meantime, my snow-boots stand poised…

Snow boots

Det er her det sner

Chaffy

Foråret er officielt begyndt, men fuglene og jeg er lidt forvirret: De bygger reder, og jeg gør forårsrent. Et naturligt instinkt kan ikke fornægtes, men det sker på baggrund af sne/vind/solskin/varme/kulde. I stedet for at åbne vinduerne for at lukke frisk luft ind, skulle jeg snarere lukke en rasende snestorm ind. Det virker lidt forkert. Jeg finder dog trøst i en viden om, at jeg ikke er alene, for selv is huset er åbent – skønt lidt for tidligt måske.

Skovsøen

Ikke længe efter forårets officielle begyndelse var der en dag, da det faktisk var ordentligt varmt og virkede som begyndelsen af ting, der kommer. Jeg var opfyldt af det store mængde af solskin og ryddede lidt op i drivhuset. Jeg var endda sikker nok på forlængelsen af det gode vejr til at sætte potterne udenfor. Det var for det meste bare en undskyldning for at være i haven og at nyde blomsterne.

CrocusesTilbage i efteråret tilbragte jeg mange timer med at plante løgblomster i håbet om at få et tæppe af flotte blomster i foråret. På grund af det ændrede vejr ligner tæppet egentlig en samling af luvslidte kamintæpper. Men jeg er en håbefuld sjæl, og jeg ved, at selv om ting måske ikke udvikler sig, som jeg oprindelig havde troet, er løgblomsterne stadigvæk dér og er mere end parate til næste år.

Snowdrops

Med det bestandige ustadige vejr og årstider befinder jeg mig i ingenmandsland: Jeg kan hverken begynde på foråret eller blive færdig med vinteren. Med kun to uger til uret stilles frem til den officielle begyndelse af sommertid, begynder jeg at tro på, at foråret faktisk er sprunget dette år over.

Garden 2

Jeg ved, at jeg er én, der elsker vinteren over alle de andre årstider, men jeg tørster efter varmt solskin på min hud, selv om det er igennem et område af solcreme med beskyttelsesfaktor 50. I mellemtiden står mine skistøvler klar…

Snow boots

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