Monday, 25 July 2011

Knee-deep in snow

There's no pleasing the New Zealanders. At the beginning of June, they said that the previous month was the warmest May that they have had for a very long time. At the beginning of this month, they said the same thing; that June was the warmest that they had experienced too.

Then they were speculating that their whole winter - from June to August - may be among the warmest on record too. Balmy weather. Travelling on the road wouldn't be a hazard because there's no snow. Yet, the ski operators were all worried stiff. No snow? Then what's going to become of their season? There won't be tourists visiting them if there is no snow. No tourists, no money.

Then the goddess of the antartic heard them. She sent a loooong breath of cold air towards them. The result: it has been snowing heavily in the South Island for more than a week already. The ski operators are happy; finally, they have real snow, not some stuff that's artificially created by their snow machines.

But what a havoc it created for the rest of the country. The whole of the South Island's snowed in and major parts of the North Island as well. The worst blizzard in 16 years, the newspapers said.

I just received an email from a friend in the South Island. He migrated there some 14 or 15 years ago. The snow in Christchurch, so he said, is about knee-deep. The schools are closed and he's been working from home. He grows lengkuas in his backyard. Or maybe I should say now, he used to grow lengkuas in his backyard. All died already, bitten by the frost and snow, his email message said. Oh....

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