It’s May so it must be spring, right? That’s what I feel in my bones. I’m looking forward to seeing spring flowers, more sun, summer clothes. But hang on a minute. This is Australia, the land down-under, the antipodes, the far flung outpost of British sovereignty. The seasons are opposite here in the southern hemisphere to the mother country. So how come after forty years of living here my English born body still doesn’t recognise the fact instinctively? I wonder if it is part of our genetic make up to recognise the seasons according to the hemisphere in which we are born.
My mixed-up-seasons body has never worried me before but a conversation I had last week got me thinking. We were talking about old people being assessed to see if they had Alzheimer’s. The doctor asks the person to do things like count backwards by 7. I had a quick practice. Still OK there, thanks to years of teaching times tables to 9 year olds. Another task was to give the day’s date and year. That’s when I had the thought, ‘What if they ask the season and I say the first thing that comes into my English-born head? Will they ship me off to the house of no-return?’
Note to self. Think of the first season that pops into you head and then go with the opposite.