Anyway, instead of moaning about the lack of rain, I make the most of the hot, dry Gladstone Spring weather to clamber onto the roof and clean the gutters, check the roofing screws, remove all the tennis balls, Frisbees and footballs, spray the hornets’ nests on the aerial, and check out what changes the neighbours have made to their yards.
I also like to flush the downpipes with a garden hose to evict any cane toads, green frogs, spiders, rats, lizards and snakes. Of course, this makes walking barefoot through our backyard an exercise in death defiance for a few days.
The final job on my list is the annual cleansing of the rain gauge. A quick blast with the hose to remove several baked on layers of dirt, coal dust and dead insects, and she’s ready for another wet season; which hopefully won’t be as damp as the last one.
And each morning, I stagger outside to check the multi-million dollar weather station at the end of our street (aka: QAL). If the steam is blowing toward town, then it’s cool south-easterlies and possible rain. Towards Tannum, then it’s stinking hot northerlies, swarms of flies and jellyfish, and no rain. If it’s blowing towards me, then I immediately cover my aluminium boat.
Occasionally Gladstone’s horizon will fill with rain laden storm clouds, but all too often they float away leaving us parched and despairing. To lure any passing showers, I carefully polish my car then leave it parked outside. Sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn’t; still it gives me something to do other than talk about the weather… yep, it sure has been hot lately.