I sit here and feel the still day with air that you think you will be able to cut with a knife because it’s oppressively hot and thick.
Sweat drips down my forehead and silently falls onto the dusty dry ground. For a second or two there’s a dark spot where the sweat fell,then it’s gone, evaporated by the sheer heat that radiates from the sun.
A cloud passes between the sun and the earth and mercifully there’s respite for a brief second where the suns rays cannot be felt. But the air is still oppressive. That’s summertime!
The minutes tick by seemingly going slower as the sun rises higher in the sky. Waves of heat rise from the ground creating a shimmering hazy effect which creates illusions, you see the oasis, but then it’s gone.
A breeze appears from nowhere, the very air itself is hot and of no relief to you. The wind brings dust stirred up from the interior of the country, stripped from dry paddocks and open land. Deposited hundreds of kilometres away and of no use to anyone.
The Cicadas start their high-pitched drone, some years worse than others but a sure sign summer is here. The birds get their work done early and then retreat into the shade to find some relief , the not so friendly snakes, browns and tigers mostly, come out to warm their cold bodies making us tread wearily through the long grass. That’s summertime. The kookaburra’s sit in the trees or on power lines looking and waiting for their next meal to slither into sight. The wedge tail eagles launch from their hill-side nests and lazily making circles in the sky drifting along until they catch a rising thermal which launches them high into the sky giving them a panoramic view from which they can view the earth with their all-seeing eyes. He swoops but this time he misses his target. Now the hard slog starts to get back to altitude.
Need I mention the flies which surround you like a cloud, getting in your ears, nostrils and even down your throat if you breathe in at the wrong time. That’s summertime.
You hear a crack, it’s a ball hitting a piece of willow. Cricket, the nations game, played and revered by many throughout the Commonwealth. Played on ovals, backyards, beaches and just about anywhere where there’s a bit of room. Every backyard version has its own rules unique to your backyard. A gentleman’s game, R.I.P Phil Hughes.
You hear a splash, it’s the local pool in full swing, providing a cool respite enjoyed by all ages. The air conditioning also provides a cool haven as well as the tree, providing welcoming shade.
You hear a roar, it’s the waves crashing onto the beach, the current pulls the water out, then it’s in again constantly moving yet somehow providing a calming influence. Surf and sand provides joy for many a long hour. You hear a jingle, it sounds like Greensleeves, it’s the Mr Whippy ice-cream van providing cold treats for everyone. There’s a mad dash to find your parents. Can I have some money please?
Summertime! It’s not all bad…