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Friday, June 10, 2005

Who Has the Best Weather?

For the last week it has been hot here in New York. Really hot and humid. Although not as hot as it will get later on in the summer, it came more or less out of nowhere. Indeed, only two weeks ago it was still chilly enough that wearing a sweatshirt was necessary when going outside. Then, BOOM! Roasting heat and sweltering humidity. Shorts and t-shirt, and too long outdoors and you could feel the sweat rolling down your back.

As I have now been back in New York for a while, and had the opportunity several times to remember just how hellishly hot it gets here in the summer, I have to say that London has the best climate in the world. This may seem counter-intuitive, because if there is one thing that the Brits like to complain about, it's their weather. It also always plays a prominent role whenever anyone else discusses those verdantly green isles. Yet the fact remains that because Britain has less seasonal variation in its weather than anywhere else I've ever been (which of course is a pretty limited amount of places) it is far more pleasant year-round. London never, or at least very rarely, gets as scorchingly hot and humid as is standard in a New York summer, yet nor does it ever get as alarmingly cold as the American East Coast or even Scotland. My last year at university in Edinburgh was spent in a flat without central heating...highly unpleasant in the middle of a Scottish winter! Even the rain, eternally cursed, is not so bad; it is rarely more than a drizzle. You can still function in it, go out, do different things, live life. On Monday evening I met a friend of mine who was visiting from Toronto off the N Train and we got caught in a sudden, absurd downpour. In the three blocks between the station and the bar we were going to we got soaked through and often does it rain like that in London?

The Brits, sadly, fail to understand what a great gift their mild climate is, racing off to southern Spain at the first sight of sunshine to crisp themselves a nice shade of lobster (as an aside: why do British holidaymakers struggle so badly with the concept of sunblock? As someone who shares the majority of that nation's ghost-like skin tone, I don't see why turning yourself into a walking bull-target is anything besides really unpleasantly painful. Maybe it's all the spanking.) I, however, know what is what when it comes to being comfortable year-round, and will happily say that London has the finest climate of any city on earth.

Yeah, you heard me right.

|| RPH || 6:20 PM || |