21 February 2016We had a surprisingly large number of people at Saturday Charles Street FAN Group at the Quaker Centre at 11:00 'considering the weather'. From a dampish and calm start to Saturday by 11:00 the rain and wind were becoming quite a feature and it was great to see about twenty 'brave the elements' to talk about? Well, the weather actually!! Whether we were natives of Wales and England, or from Czech Republic, Lithuania, Spain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman or South Korea we all had strong views about the weather in Wales - and not all negative! Many liked the basically temperate climate of Wales - cold rain in the winter, warm rain in the summer - as it led to our wonderfully green and luscious landscape and tasty meat from sheep, cattle and pigs. If you came from a hot, dry and maybe dusty climate, the Welsh weather could be a blessed relief, or at least a big contrast. In fact, the Welsh Tourist Board a few years noticed that that there was a market to be developed for holidays in Wales during the summer for people seeking relief from very hot temperatures in various countries in the world.
On the other hand, no-one could pretend everything about the Welsh weather was perfect - in particular, it was the all too regular combination of wind AND rain which prevented the easy use of an umbrella, which got people down - and why many Welsh people rushed off to sunnier climes for holidays. Days of endless cloud can lower the spirits at times, and an occasional day of all over blue sky and sunshine can certainly raise the mood. As a child David prayed for fine weather to be able to play football. The other David said there is no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing. Paul suggested that Cardiff was one of the wettest big cities in the UK. Carol talked about the contrast between the horizontal rain of Devon and the vertical rain of Cardiff. Certainly, it is wetter on the western side of the UK, than on the eastern side. To get snow nowadays you might need to go up to the Brecons Beacons, which Birute and family had done this week (but maybe I am tempting fate as we could still get some in Cardiff in the next few weeks!). Katka made a meaningful statement that if you had a lot of time on your hands during the day, then what seemed liked lots of rain and wind all the time could be a real issue as it was not so convenient to be outdoors. After a nice warm cup of tea or coffee we all summoned the willpower to face the even heavier rain (a real 'downpour') and even stronger and gusty wind (a real gale) and go on our ways, having found some warmth, companionship and friendly conversation for an hour.