Written by Kate Leaver


Life critic: Summer lovin’ Brits

In her regular column, Kate Leaver reviews life’s banalities. This week she’s had a shit-eating grin on her Aussie face watching us Brits soak up the sunshine.

summer sky with light cloudsNot tryin’a be condescending or nuffin, but Brits in the sun are proper sweet, like, yeah?

We all know what normal British weather is like, obviously. It’s infamously drizzly. There is something strangely charming about these low, steel-grey skies that weep on you just when you’ve left the house without a coat. It’s part of this country’s character, those cheeky bloody looming clouds and the cold that can just DESCEND on you without warning. Even in spring. Even right sodding now, here in Northern Hemisphere June.

The British know what to expect; you’ve been living under these skies for as long as you can remember. If you opened up your chests, you’d see teeny tiny storm clouds hovering over your vital organs and umbrellas floating in your bloodstream.

That’s why you really fucking love it when it’s sunny. I get it. You lifelong Brits especially; you just about lose your sweet minds in the sun.

The Oxford English Dictionary should replace the word ‘gratitude’ with an Instagram photo of a Brit in the sunshine. Necking a cider on the side of the street, loitering outside a pub in thick groups of what seems at first to just be sweaty men in suits. Airing out their armpits and spirits in the delicious early evening light, looking up at the earth-ceiling like the colour blue has just been invented.

“Vitamin D straight on British skin feels like intravenous crack. And it is so bleeding lovely to see, you magnificent bastards.”

I should confess. I am half-British, but I grew up in Sydney, Australia. Back there, we eat sunshine for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We swim, lie, work, walk and make love in the sunshine. Our economy pretty much runs on sunshine. I’m almost positive it’s scientifically true that Australians are 70 per cent salt water, 30 per cent sunshine.

topless man sitting in the sunI get cold when it drops below 20 degrees, and when it rains for longer than 20 minutes, literally all I’m capable of is imagining being snuggled up to my crush-person in bed.

It’s the complete opposite of the effect sunshine has on the British – where they stop being able to function because Vitamin D straight on their skin feels like intravenous crack. And it is so bleeding lovely to see, you magnificent bastards.

Brits in the sunshine: you get five very shiny golden stars. Never lose that lovely, warm, childlike enthusiasm for sunshine. It suits you.


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Written by Kate Leaver

Wandering Australian journalist, professional-level Harry Potter fan, occasional funny person, gelato enthusiast. Still worried about the state of Britney Spears' mental health.