So, the winter’s finally over, and spring has finally sprung. It’ll almost be summer and, if the general British summer’s anything to go by, pretty much anything goes. You could hit the beach or try to get a tan before the heavens open and you get soaked. But, fear not, the sun DOES stay out. Some of the time.
I’m about to post my personal list of top five things that the British public usually do at the first sight of any sun streaming through the clouds. Feel free to add your own ideas in the comments below if you think I’ve missed anything.
001. Blokes going topless: Is there really anything worse than seeing grown men, usually butch and covered in tattoos, getting their kit off? I wouldn’t mind if they were young, non-tattooed and fit, but most of them really aren’t. The majority of them just let it all hang out whilst holding beer and smelling of BO. And it really isn’t pleasant. Urk! It’s even worse when the World Cup’s on and they’re all clogging up the pubs and bars. I’m just counting my lucky stars that I don’t support England. I won’t have to put up with them.
002. Carrying emergency brollies and jackets: You’ll usually carry your brolly with your sunglasses in your bag, just in case. One minute it’s sunny, the next it’s absolutely hosing it down, and you’ll usually carry a jacket over your bag straps in case it gets a bit cold. Oh, the joys of the British summer.
003. Music blaring from cars: The only thing worse than chavs on the back seat of the bus sharing their shit music with everyone on it are the chavs in shit cars blasting their shit music out of the open window. We don’t want to hear it. Please turn it down.
004. People who think it’s cool to wear no sun cream: Whoever does this, you’re stupid. If you want to go out resembling a lobster and looking a tit, that’s fine, but don’t come crying to me when you get skin cancer. Idiots.
005. Hitting the beach: At the first sight of the sun, or during a heatwave, you can guarantee beaches will get full within an hour until there isn’t a patch of sand left. There are also the brave buggers who attempt to swim or paddle in the sea when it’s absolutely freezing cold (even in the summer – damn you North Sea!) and only spend about five minutes in there before deciding to walk back out, barefooted, over a sandload of shingle and don’t go back in for the rest of the day.
(NB: I’ve done the ‘swimming in the sea’ thing myself…)
BONUS 006. Complaining about the lack of fans: When we were basking in a heatwave last year, I tried looking everywhere (including in pound shops) for a hand-held battery operated fan, but the only ones I could find were cheap and tacky ones from Clas Ohlson which didn’t last two minutes. The Daily Mail even ran a report on the lack of fans because everyone had been out panic-buying in case they got too hot. I resorted to putting a big electric one in the garden on our table, so I now have a hand-held fold-up fan for this summer, which I bought from a charity shop, and I don’t even care.
Us Brits really aren’t ashamed of anything are we?