My daughter Emma, who shot and edited this little tea-making video, which I think shows promise (she is thinking about a career in film these days), celebrated the last day of school by going out to a local cafe with her friends and enjoying a London Fog - Earl Grey tea with steamed milk and a shot of vanilla syrup. Hold on - when I think about last days of school for the summer, I generally imagine an exodus of kids in shorts and sundresses heading to the convenience store to buy a crushed ice drink. Well, we are still waiting for the summer part of 'summer holidays' to kick in. Every time we look at the two weather websites we frequent, we are assured that even though there is a chance of rain today, two weeks of solid sunshine and warmer temperatures are just around the corner. As my friend Sue pointed out, perhaps the ongoing promise of better weather is a plot by the weather people to prevent the population from harming themselves en masse because those solid two weeks of sunshine have yet to materialize. We, in the southwest corner of Canada have been following the carrot in front of our noses for the past two months and never quite reaching it - so far this spring/summer we have yet to see three days of decent weather in a row. It is still cozy up-with-a-cup-of-tea-and-a-book weather, still 'put on a sweater and let's go for hot chocolate' weather, and we are starting to get, as my mother would say, a bit 'owly'.
They tell us this Canada Day/Independence Day weekend is supposed to be the start of a warming trend. I hope to God that is true because when I was driving my son to the golf course this morning I was forced to turn on the heat in the car, which seems ridiculous in June but in these parts, not unheard of. Our climate is already a humid one. Add pouring rain and cool temperatures and the damp begins to invade our bones. Last year the spring was equally wet and cool, and summer was not that much better. Our tomatoes and garlic and basil all grew, but they never really took off like they have in other summers. On the other hand, the lawn is lush and emerald green and grows like a hay field in this weather, and I don't have to spend my evenings watering the garden amid the mosquitoes which have just hatched with a gleeful vengeance this week.
Canadians are known, I believe, for two things: being nice and well-mannered in foreign countries, and complaining about the weather. Trust me, we complain when it is cool and wet, and when the sun comes out and warms things up we complain it is too hot and dry - though we will apologize for doing so. Even the Tim Hortons coffee and donut chain has commercials on the subject. Now that I think of it, a post lamenting the weather seems like a fitting way to celebrate Canada Day, eh? I have invited some friends for a barbecue tomorrow evening. That seems rather optomistic of me considering the weather, but it won't be the first time my husband has flipped burgers in the rain.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived in Ottawa today and will celebrate July First in our nation's capital tomorrow. I hope for three things for their visit: 1) The sun shines on them with a nice temperature, say in the mid to high 20's celcius without too much of that awful Ontario humidity 2) The Canadian public behaves as beautifully as they generally do for visiting royals, and 3) that someone makes them a decent cup of tea now and then. My girls are up to the challenge.
I also wish my parents a very happy 52nd Wedding Anniversary tomorrow!
The music for Emma's video is 'Glass of Water' by Andrew Bird.