It comes around every year. Thank goodness. Summer that is. There's always a bit of debate surrounding when summer starts and whether it actually occurs in Melbourne but that's probably a different story.
This shoe shop window at least suggests that summer is well and truly on the way and encourages us to get out there and explore it, engage with it, find it perhaps. Summer just has that sense of adventure and exploration that other seasons really can't compete with.
The weather that summer can bring can leave us warm with long days and evenings giving us a feeling that each day offers us lots of time to do things. Images of beaches and water fit with what summer means for many Australians. The beach becomes much more inviting during summer months and there's many people who simply flock to the beach once the temperature reaches 30 degrees or so.
Summer in Australia is also associated with the holidays. School holidays and public holidays come together at this time of year for Australians. We can enjoy long days at home or away on holiday without the usual pressures of getting up and out the door with kids in tow or getting ourselves organised for our busy week at work. So it's a break from the normal routine, a chance to recoup, a chance to explore and do new things.
Summer in Australia is also associated with natural disasters. In recent years summer has brought many disasters of different sorts. Bush fires, floods and cyclones have cost lives and damaged communities across Australia. It's easy to forget that when we haven't been personally touched by these disasters but good to always remember what summer might mean to others.
Summer breaks and Christmas celebrations might also be tinged with sadness for some people. When we celebrate and promote these times as times to be with people who are most important to us, we can also remember that that isn't always possible for everyone. For people who can't be with people they want to be with for whatever reason, and there are quite a few reasons, summer and holiday seasons can simply be sad and hurtful times.
So exploring summer might mean lots of different things to us all. Summer in Australia is not the same as summer in other parts of the world. Ideas of exploring summer can remind us to take on new adventures and enjoy the great outdoors we have. It can also remind us of those times when that hasn't been a safe or easy thing to do.