One of the things many people do not realise about the outback Kimberley is that even though we are still in the tropics, in the Winter – or Dry Season as it is known – it can get quite cold, especially at night. Cold at least for those who are used to temperatures well above 20 C for most of the year. Last night got down to 9 degrees the last time I checked on a bathroom break. In the small hours I was thinking maybe I needed an extra blanket.
The dry season is the best time for tourists due to it being dry (usually) and comfortably cooler than the humid heat of the wet season when despite frequent heavy rain, temperatures can get up into the high 40s. Also of course, travel is much easier when the roads are not under water for days or weeks at a time. The only tourists who come at that time of year are usually those who are interested in lightning storms. We get a lot of those. Climate change may have quite an effect on this. Last year was not much of a wet season compared to previous years. I did lot of travelling to communities when in theory I should not have been able.
The weather has turned quite cold in the last few days as expected. The unseasonal rain seems to have made it worse. During the day I was comfortable enough in a tee shirt, though I did consider putting on something warmer for a while just after I arose from bed this afternoon. However my local neighbours are all rugged up in jumpers and quilted jackets. I saw no kids out and about, so it was a good day for me to be ill in bed sleeping off the effects of a dose of food poisoning.
Today was remarkable because it was heavily overcast all day. and there was a short but very violent thunderstorm this afternoon. The first thunderclap was directly overhead and simultaneous with the lightning. I had just got up from my warm bed and was drinking a mug of soup. Very startling. Just as well I no longer had diarrhoea. My first thought was that a bomb or a car had exploded. One does not expect thunder at this time of year. The rain continued for a while, though not as heavily as yesterday.