The air-conditioning is up the chute again and the heating's kicked back in again, which makes it a very jolly holiday here in Helminthdale Library. Inside the building we're wilting like hothouse flowers waiting for some retired gentleman to hire a gumshoe to look after his daughter's men friends. Outside it's a rough October day, the latest of many this summer. There is a tang of mildew about the place.
Not having direct access to any of the fans which have appeared by magic out of one of the magic metal cupboards, my office isn't pleasant. Not that it ever is, but today it's foetid. Or, as Sybil warned me as I clocked in this morning:
"It's like a steveadore's jockstrap in there today."
I bow to her superior experience.
Seth opens a couple of windows, which is something we're not allowed to do under the terms of the lease. It offers little respite, creating a weather front just above Frog's desk which leads him to retreat into the Acq. Team's area before he's struck by lightning.
To cap it all, the staff at the municipal incinerator are trying to catch up with the backlog of offerings caused by two days' strike action. The chimneys can't cope with all that smoke and torrential rain so everything downwind of the place (which is to say, the whole of the town centre) smells of burnt plimsolls and cabbage.