Image by Anna Inghardt
I am not much of a morning person. Nor am I a fan of winter. Combine the bleak morning chill with darkness before dawn breaks and I am at my least creative, least constructive and least friendly.
I returned from living in the tropics in 1996 and I have quite uncomfortably grappled with the winter months every single year since. I try to deny the fact that winter is approaching once the heat of summer says goodbye, and when the chill does hit I pretend to ignore it. If I don’t acknowledge it, it doesn’t exist. Except the constant pain in my neck from a childhood head-on-collision injury and the ache in my bones are fierce, stark reminders that winter in fact is upon us.
I don’t much like winter. Dry skin craving moisture, garden craving sunshine, bikini craving beach visit; everything around me tells me the cold is here. I rug up to keep warm and get too hot. I dress down to cool down and get too cold. I have a scarf permanently attached to my neck to humour the old neck injury. I cover my ankles to keep the chill away and then smile at the mockery of the pink ugg boots adorning my feet. How did I become so dorky? Winter is how. My pink fluffy dressing gown keeps me company at dawn, so what of it? My bikini is laughing at me from the spot I left it hanging over my shower screen some months ago. I gaze at it some mornings, like a lovesick lover pining for what once was. I know my bikini will come to life again soon. Any day now.
I don’t like to count the days away, God knows time flies by way too fast. But secretly, oh so quietly, I do count the days until spring. After I down my second cup of coffee for the morning I peer outside and smile when I see the sun smiling back. Still grateful for the small things such as a winter that barely reaches below zero degrees, a winter that in some countries can be classed as a mild summer. But when it hits 40 degrees and I am perched on the sand in my long lost bikini I won’t be thinking of this brisk winter morning. I will humbly count my blessings that I live in a country with such a beautiful summer and that I was born a summer child. And very quietly, oh so begrudgingly, I will be dreading the fact that in the back of my mind I know, as sure as the sun is shining, that winter will be back again someday soon.