Barb and I went camping in the mountains on the weekend – the first time we’ve been all year. Personally, I love being outdoors at this time of year, when the cold weather is just starting to creep in. Barb’s a bit more bothered, but we sorted her out with a pocket hand-warming device and some huge hand-knitted socks courtesy of my mother.
Coming back into Melbourne, though, got me thinking about the oncoming winter months – specifically, those mornings that make you want to put your day clothes on over your pyjamas to avoid the chill. Here in the city, that cold factor isn’t even mitigated by breathtaking views of frosty alpine slopes.
That line of thought brought me to the vague recollection that we’re due for a heater service. Melbourne winters are much easier to tolerate with a working heater of some description. Ideally, I’d love to have a fireplace, but we’re still a ways off from being able to install one, so for the moment it’s gas.
It’s not like I feel a need to have the heating on constantly – there are plenty of other ways to keep warm, as we’re currently attempting to teach the kids. Not that teenagers are much interested in rugging up in grandma’s blankets when it’s so easy to hit a switch on the wall. That’s a benefit of a wood-burning fireplace, actually: it would make them work a bit harder for their heat, and maybe consider their energy consumption in a bit more depth.
But at the end of the day, ducted gas heating close to Melbourne in winter is something I really appreciate having access to. I don’t plan to leave it to chance as to whether our system’s in good working order, like I did last year. That was a mistake, let me tell you. When it finally conked out, it just so happened to be the coldest day of the year.
Blankets and bottomless cups of hot lemon tea are so important for wintertime comfort, but it’s nice to have a heating system to fall back on.