It hit 30 degrees on the weekend here in Melbourne. Right. Well, that’s summer out of the way then.

And with the end of summer comes the end of holidays. On the first week’s struggle back at work for many  people, I am delighted by the response from one PR (that’s public relations person, to those on the know – as a rule, overpaid punters who turn blind at this journalist’s requests) who I emailed for a price for a hotel to run in a travel story. I asked last week. Silly me. I forgot that even non-Christian countries delight in the holidays that Christmas affords. “I just got back from a long break. I will get back to you shortly,” he told me for his week-long silence, obviously still stunned at his misfortune to find himself in the walls of an office once again. At least he’s honest.

But really, I shouldn’t moan about the weather. I could be up to my armpits in sludgy brown flood water, with swimming cows and snapping crocodiles floating down the main street – to wit poor, soggy  Queensland at the moment. 

Yet Melbourne, I have to say I’m disappointed you, turning on today’s sporadic rain, grey skies and general morbidity in mid-January. But then sometimes, you get your priorities right. A quick trip into the city while the definitive grudge sport, the Australia v England cricket series, the Ashes, was on, and the streets were full of smug, boozy, benevolent English people. On the tram, an older Englishman gave me his seat, saying, “I don’t normally do so, but I’m feeling quite happy today.” Reader, I took the seat.

While I’m not a cricket tragic, our drubbing was made worse by the fact it was done in mostly miserable weather, which would of course made our northern-hemisphere visitors more comfortable and therefore happier. Then, on the last day of the Melbourne series, the Aussie sun came out and did the job. The English fans were still understandably smug, but now they were at least sunburnt and smug 😉 You takes your revenge where you can gets it…