The Weather Bureau agrees with me, having confirmed that last month was the coldest May since 1970, which for the majority of the population means forever.
But not for me! I remember 1970 as if it were yesterday! Maybe the day before.
So let’s indulge in a little nostalgic walk back in time to see what Kitchen Hand was up to during that freezing May.
- I caught the bus to school every day – a streamlined Ansair model still with 1950s styling: rounded edges, a sloping back, green glass windows and cream livery with a red pinstripe. Cool. It picked me up at the corner of my street and dropped me at Essendon Railway Station. I walked the last mile to school from there.
- It snowed in the school yard for the first time on record. It lasted probably five minutes and melted soon after that, but snow is snow.
- We dissected a mouse in science class. I thought, is this really necessary?
- Queen Elizabeth II’s motorcade rolled past the school on its way from Essendon Aerodrome to the city.
- We went on a school camp to Lerderderg Gorge, near Blackwood. Apart from the Alps, it is probably the coldest part of Victoria. We nearly froze. We had to plan and take along provisions appropriate for camping: canned meat, nuts, fruit cake, that kind of thing. I remember being amazed that my friend brought along a pack of Birds Eye frozen fish fingers. What was he thinking?
- Recession saw my father lose his job as a traveling salesman in the catering industry. Shortly after, he got another job in an allied trade, food manufacturing. He came home one day in a Holden HT station wagon, brand new, mid-olive green with green vinyl self-patterned upholstery and push-button radio.
- We spent two weeks of the May holidays at Inverloch and went to the beach every day, without swimming clothes because it was too cold to swim. However, we invariably ended up splashing each other and getting so wet we just went in the water in our normal clothes and ran home half frozen. I don’t know how my mother put up with us. Seven children and all their clothes wet.
- My youngest brother turned two.
- I was thirteen.
Was anyone else alive in 1970?
What do you remember?