Monday, December 14, 2009

Aussie summer

Over the weekend, it was incredibly hot. Temperature in the shade was around 35 degrees (that's close to 100F), and we can only guess how scorching it was in the sun. Frankly, I had no interest in finding out. We opted to stay indoors for the hottest parts of the day, so we did the obvious thing to do on an incredibly hot summer day: we decorated the Christmas tree.

I may never adapt to Christmas in the Southern Hemisphere.

Monday morning dawned hot and slightly humid. It was looking to be another toasty day, so I took the girls out early, hoping to wear them out before the sun really got blazing. Strangely enough, by 10am it was much cooler. When I talked with Markus on the phone at midday, I commented on how there seemed to be a haze blocking sun intensity, "more like bush fire haze than weather haze" I said. I couldn't put my finger on why (it wasn't grey or smokey), but we experienced our first bush fire several weeks ago and it reminded me of that.

That bush fire was a small one. We had taken Ellie to a trial run of a girls' chess club when we noticed smoke blowing across the parking lot. Investigation revealed that the open space near the community center had just gone up in flames. We were evacuated by the fire department. Although it was relatively small, bush fires can be unpredictable and fast-moving, so they sent us on home.

This morning, I noticed how odd the sunlight looked, filtering in through the windows. Then I smelled smoke and hopped out of bed in a hurry. Don't worry, we're fine! There is indeed a massive bush fire, but it is down near Harvey, over 100km away! So, it was the outer fringes of the smoke that cooled things off here yesterday. Right now, the sky outside looks like this:

It is quite smokey out. I can't imagine what it's like for the communities closer to the fire. We are so far from it, and the smoke is pretty strong all the way here in Perth.


Karly said...

Wow. I can't believe that the smoke is so noticeable there when the fire is such a distance away. Glad that you guys are ok, and hope that those in the communities closer to the fire are ok as well.

Anonymous said...

Scary to have so much smoke from so far away! On a happier note, I was delighted to see several familiar ornaments, including the clothespin people, on your Christmas tree! It looks so festive! How do the girls like it?