LESLEY KEATING: How British – mowing the lawn after dark wearing a head torch

Keep cool and mow your lawn after dark, but make sure you wear a head torch
Keep cool and mow your lawn after dark, but make sure you wear a head torch
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We Brits are a funny bunch, aren’t we?   It seems like we’re never happier than when we’re moaning about the weather. 

Recent chats with neighbours have inevitably started with someone proclaiming how unbearably hot it is. Really, is it hot? I hadn’t noticed myself. And some even dared to utter the unmentionable, ‘could do with some rain now’. 


We usually spend most of the year complaining about how damp and soggy the weather is, how cold we are and how summer can’t come quickly enough. 

If I had a quid for each of my Facebook friends who have been posting statuses of the ‘too hot, can’t sleep’ variety, I’d be able to afford a weekend break somewhere hot and sunny with the proceeds. 

Well, they do say ‘be careful what you wish for’ don’t they?

OK, granted it has been blisteringly hot but I like it.  I love summer clothes, being able to eat outside, getting a decent tan in my own back garden because the UV index matches that of Cyprus. It’s also been comical seeing neighbours flopping exhausted into their kids’ paddling pools, cooling off. 

We even spotted someone in a nearby garden the other night mowing the lawn when it was cooler after dark with a cycle light attached to a headband to see what he was doing!

It also took me a while to realise having a hefty 13.5 tog duvet on the bed was probably not a great idea either.  So, we went shopping for a lighter one. You try finding a Super King 4.5 tog duvet in the middle of a British heatwave. It’s not easy.

And we finally invested in a Dyson fan which is now dominating a corner of the bedroom, looking like a cross between a metal detector and a wind turbine. However, it’s been brilliant and even the dog loves lying in its path. The only drawback was it was horrendously expensive. 

I did look at the new, whizzy Dyson hairdryers too but given the fan’s eye-watering price, I’m hopeful it may double up as one.


I love airports for one reason only.  They get me to where I want to be. 

But I don’t love boarding delays at some crazy hour of the day or night and I certainly don’t fancy eating while I’m waiting either.  

The woman opposite me shovelled in so much food before our flight back to the UK that she must have gone up a couple of dress sizes. 

The last thing I want to do at nearly midnight just before a four-hour night flight is to eat fast food or, god forbid, some sort of picnic.

So, here’s a post- holiday diet tip for you: just sit opposite someone noisily demolishing piles of rolls, crisps and biscuits with all the grace of a masticating koala.

That will certainly quell your appetite.


Mike loves new gadgets.  Last night, he came home with a small Bluetooth device like a flying saucer with LED lights which fixes above the garden parasol.

You can connect Apple Music or iTunes directly to it and the lights flash in time with the beat. And we’ve had SO much fun with it; £30 well spent.

I am not sure the neighbours loved it as much us though, after we spent the whole evening excitedly working our way through a medley of 70s-90s’ hits while shrieking, ‘I remember this one!’ 

I’m also not sure what they thought of me dancing through the whole of the 12-inch of Funkadelic’s One Nation Under a Groove on the decking either. 

I blame Mike. He does make a rather strong G&T.