It has been a miserable summer so far. Ever the optimist I am holding out for a warm and sunny August. However after repeated weather warnings, flooding, my garden drowning and very little sunshine, even my continuous optimism was beginning to fade. I have long been obsessed with the weather, infact it appears to be a family trait with my Dad and Sister showing similar characteristics! In recent years my interest in weather patterns has shifted slightly as I have begun to take more interest in climate change and the environment. I am concerned by reports of climate change and the effects it may have on us here in Sussex for example; adverse whether patterns presenting as a consequence of climate change.

Since I founded Green Clean my interest in environmental issues has developed further. I am continuously debating ways in which I can organise Green Clean to be more environmentally friendly and I am regularly researching new natural cleaning product recipes to encourage less reliance on chemicals.

Experiencing a summer like 'this' is demoralising. Throughout 2011 and early 2012, I didn't think twice about jumping on the bike and riding round to see clients. I even gave up my trusty 30 year old vintage looking Rayleigh (for sale at a very reasonable price by the way) for a shiny, more efficient and modern bike to speed up the process and make cycling even more enjoyable. Alas over the past 3 months the fancy, modern bike has spent most of the time locked away in the shed as it has been too wet to ride it! I remember one recent, lovely June day when I braved the bike up to Summersdale to visit a client. It was not a sensible decision. I could barely see where I was going due to the rain in my face, I was drenched to the bone in seconds (despite a wet weather jacket). I was miserable and cars and buses seemed to take pleasure out of driving through the floods to soak me. I just wanted to give up! What is the point of making an effort to use the bike when this is what happens to cyclists?! Furthermore how can I possibly expect my dedicated staff members to cycle to work when the weather is so unpredictable and turbulent? 

As I said, I am ever the optimist....I decided the best way through this terrible summer was to make my wet weather jacket my standard attire, invest in a good pair of waterproof boots and to carry a spare pair of clothes around with me where ever I go. Armed with precautions I resigned myself to the fact that whether this weather it is due to climate change or simply an unfortunate case of classic British summer weather, this rain was here to stay and I just had to get on with it! So that is what I have been doing, the bike is back out of the shed and on the road. Oh how I have missed it! Although it is dissapointing not to be bathed in sunshine at this time of year there are several positive points to cling on to:

 

  • We can use our hose pipes again as we are no longer in drought...just incase you need to water your garden...
  • The countryside is very green.
  • It is still light until late.
  • It can be quite fun to stick on a pair of wellies and wade through puddles....sorry floods!
  • We are all saving money on summer outdoor events that are being cancelled left right and centre. It was dissapointing to hear that the Goodwood fireworks to celebrate the end of Chichester festivities were cancelled last weekend as well as Whispering Woods at Westdean being postponed, however, there is still time for the ground to dry out and for Summer to get back on track.
Adopting this attitude has made the bad weather all the more bearable. In true British fashion many of my clients are divulging their weather stories to me. As usual the weather is a popular topic of conversation and a comfortable ice breaker. The communities of Chichester seem to be coming together in solidarity against the mightly jet stream that is causing all the trouble, and that is nice to see. The weather rumours always cause me to smile. One client last week explained to me that the problem with the positioning of the jet stream is something that we are expected to suffer every summer for the next five years...yikes! Another client told me that it was the beginning of the end...(of the world)..uh oh.
As I write this, the latest weather news is finally positive with the BBC announcing...'Britain 'may have a real summer''....this is good news. Apparenty the dreaded jet stream is on the move back up to Scotland and beyond and Britain may yet bask in the glory of long sunny summer days. It didn't rain on St Swithians day (well it did but I dont think it counts as it was minimal) Lets look on the bright side, it is not yet August, the olympics are due to start in 10 days or so and the school holidays haven't even started yet!
Bring on summer...it is just around the corner!

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