Our first spring heatwave has well and truly arrived – hurrah! It’s already been a bright, balmy week for many parts of the UK, and forecasters are saying temperatures could peak at record-breaking levels for March.
The current hottest-day record for March was 53 years ago, when temperatures soared to 25.6C back in 1968, recorded in Cambridgeshire according to the Met Office.
Whether the mercury tips to new March records or not, a good dose of sunshine really does feel good right now. That said, spring heatwaves always come with their own set of quirks and conundrums too.
Here are 20 things that only happen during a spring heatwave…
1. There’s a strange mix of excitement and panic. OMG sunshine! Hang on… are you ready for this? It’s all a bit overwhelming.
2. The wardrobe confusion is unrivalled. Just 48 hours ago, you needed to wrap up in a jumper, padded jacket and woolly hat for your walk and still felt chilly. How is it possible for conditions to change overnight? And what on earth do you wear today?!
3. That only-in-spring combo of winter tights with a sundress seems a safe middle-ground choice.
4. Then there’s the folks who totally missed the memo and are strolling around in full winter coats and scarves. I’m fine, I like being warm!
5. At the other end of the scale, there’s always a trusty few who are already in full beach mode at the first glimpse of blue sky. It wouldn’t be a British heatwave without at least a couple of topless blokes nipping into the corner shop.
6. Oh God the shoes. This is even trickier. Too soon for flip-flops? But those trainers and boots you’ve been clomping around in require socks. Footwear has never felt so confusing.
7. The foot shame is real. Your feet haven’t seen daylight in months – they’re just not ready! (Make a note to pick up some heel-softening cream from Boots…)
8. The sun cream dilemma. Do you really need it? Probably would be sensible… But where even is your bottle of SPF? And has it expired? Half the day will have gone by the time you’ve hunted it down and slapped some on.
9. The spring heatwave FOMO How come you didn’t get invited to a park picnic? Should you have organised one? Oh God…
10. There’s a whole other layer of panic to this if you happen to be working/unwell/too busy to go and ‘make the most of it’. What if this is the only sun we get all year – and you’re missing it?!
11. The urge to eat outdoors will hit hard, but enthusiasm and preparation aren’t quite on the same page yet. You’ll turn up at the park realising you’ve forgotten half the picnic essentials.
12. On a plus note, it’s perhaps the only time of year when you can dine al-fresco and not be too bothered by bugs and bees. Win.
13. And when you do finally get out for a walk, being outside for the first time in ages with bare arms, feeling the sun on your flesh, is literally THE BEST THING EVER.
14. No matter what mood you woke up in, you’ll spend most of the day with an inane grin plastered on your face.
15. Everyone, including you, will say these words a lot: “Oh, a bit of sun makes such a difference, doesn’t it?” Well it really does. Fact.
16. Overnight, the local park will turn into an Olympics-worthy sports arena. There’s football, rugby, bowls, frisbee, yoga, skating, even some boxing – it’s all happening.
17. It’s not like you haven’t eaten ice-cream all winter (supermarket Magnum multipacks are a year-round staple), but that first lick of a Solero in the actual sunshine is truly special.
18. Your dietary desires will suddenly change. Hearty soups and jacket potatoes have done their time – you’re craving all the fresh and crunchy vibrant spring food now.
19. Later on, you’ll vacuum-pack all your winter woollens and big coats and shove them under the bed/on top of the wardrobe, as the organised efficiency queen you are. Won’t be needing them for a while.
20. Oh… It’s a week later and you’re unpacking the jumpers and warming up soup for dinner again. Hey ho. At least your feet can hibernate a little longer.
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