In the bleak midsummer...
The weather is the topic of conversation this Christmas Day. A few days ago it was 27 degrees at night, 40 in the daytime, the sky beige from smoke and the sun red.
Last night was 6 degrees, and today about 12! Snow has fallen on Mt Buller where the bushfires are still going, and hail has fallen in Melbourne and also at Wyndam Vale (between Geelong and Melbourne) as we were eating Christmas dinner with a Lau/Lomaiviti family. A delicious lunch of prawns, snapper in coconut cream, dalo, chicken chop suey, Sri Lankan curried fried wraps, and then lote made from sago, pumpkin and coconut cream. It really hailed and the ground outside, formerly brown without even grass, was quickly covered in white!
The soaking rains of today and yesterday have been the best Christmas present of course.
I decided last night to stop grouching about not 'doing' Christmas this year when Peceli found a long lead and lit up the coloured lights on the verandah posts. They had been there, dormant, all year. Then we lit candles in the window and perhaps our ordinary Californian Bungalow looked more welcoming for Christmas.
We have had a lovely Christmas day - two church services (we even sang 'The North Wind is tossing the leaves' - about a dry brown Christmas, and then it started raining hard outside!) then dinner with a Fijian family. There were lots of carols on the TV all day.
The pics are from the Age newspaper and website - firemen at Mt Buller in the snow, a Melbourne house with a garden of hail, and a pic of the hail itself.
By the way, one of my favourite hymns is by Christina Rosetti and starts off with 'In the bleak midwinter'. A superb version of the song is sung by the Blind Boys of Alabama.