I’ve mused in the past about just how long the Algarvean spring lasts, and how to distinguish it from winter. Basing such distinctions on rainfall or blooming times isn’t very effective, leading me to postulate that spring lasts about five months — from the beginning of the rainy season until the end.
But now I have a new method of categorization: seasons by bed linens. Because Portuguese housing is notorious for its poor insulation, down comforters are a must during the winter nights. Eventually there comes a time when it’s warm enough to replace the toasty down comforter with a light blanket and coverlet. That, I have concluded, is spring. Summer is when the blanket gets to be too much, and we all sleep with just a sheet and coverlet. (High summer is when we wish sheets could be made of ice.)
By this system, I can now state that spring in the Algarve lasts only three weeks. That’s how long we managed to keep the blanket on our bed. It’s really quite shocking how quickly the weather here moves from cool nights to warm ones, and how suddenly we go from long pants and short sleeve shirts to shorts and tank tops.
Summer is here. You know how else I can tell? My various expatriate Pilates students are all heading back north. I won’t see them again until October.
Time to stock up on ice cream…