It has been unseasonably warm, last week there were a couple of sticky days where stripping down to shorts wasn’t enough (I’ll spare you the photo) and we hadn’t had a frost (we usually get a couple in late February), that changed on Monday.
It’s the first snow on the ground here for 2 years, much too early to linger and also unseasonably cold. Not that it is unprecedented, as our weather is determined as much by wind direction as anything else and with our backdoor open to Antarctica every so often that wind comes up all the way from the ice. Every 40 years or so there is a polar blast that sweeps out of the south dumping snow to low levels around the middle of summer, catching summer holiday makers by surprise.
The point is that in NZ, seasons are an illusion, winter can come at anytime, as well as hot weather in winter. Four Seasons in One Day was a household phrase long before Crowded House had their 1992 hit “Four Seasons in One Day” apparently inspired by the weather in Melbourne, Australia, where they were based at the time, the video was done in NZ and the brothers Finn would have heard the phrase while growing up in the Waikato. To me, it seems to be more about mood and depression which was touched on in the autobiographical Haul Away from the Time and Tide album. An earlier weather related hit was from DD Smash in 1983, Outlook for Thursday, I didn’t get it until I’d visited Auckland a few times. The weather there is often fickle and trying to forecast Auckland weather could drive a meteorologist crazy, most of the times I’ve been in Auckland, Four Seasons many times a Day would be more appropriate.
I suspect author Barry Crump borrowed it, but there is a dialogue in ‘Hang on a minute mate’ that goes something like this:
What’s the weather going to do?
Can you see that hill?
Then, it’s gonna rain!
If you can’t see it, it’s raining!
It’s a pain but it pays in this country to always be equipped for the weather to do the opposite of what you think. Somewhere in the bottom of my day bag there is a floppy sunhat, a beanie and a vest, time to shake them out and chuck in mittens and a parka as well.