Sun does not equal fun for everybody

Mark Rowney is not a fan of hot weather
Mark Rowney is not a fan of hot weather

While the majority of folk in the Province are basking in the recent run of sunny weather, spare a thought for people like Mark Rowney who cannot wait for the rain to return.

The 40-year-old who lives in Belfast says that his mood takes a serious downturn when the sun comes out.

Mark, who is originally from Lurgan, said: “My mum remembers even when I was a toddler when it was sunny I wouldn’t go outside.

“As long as I can remember I’ve never liked the bright light and heat of the sun.

“As someone who has depression I’m told a bit of sunlight, vitamin D will help, but it’s actually the opposite.

“I feel worse, physically uncomfortable. It alters my behaviour.

“I spend more time than I should on my own and when it’s sunny I get worse. I’m less inclined to go out.”

“I kind of understand why people like it but for me it makes every task almost Herculean.”

As we sat in the cool interior of a Belfast coffee shop watching the masses pass by in shorts, vests and T-shirts with temperatures soaring, Mark commented: “I can barely function on days like this.

“I don’t really have any summer clothes. Most of the time I wear baggy shirts and hoodies.

“I’m counting down the days to autumn and winter.

“I’ve figured out that my optimal temperature is 14 degrees.

“Anything above that I start to feel very uncomfortable.”

He commented: “If I was going out for a walk I love it if there’s a howling gale and the rain is coming down so hard it hurts your face.

“I don’t do holidays. The idea of a week in Lanzarote is my idea of hell.”

Mark, who is currently unemployed, said: “I do realise I’m a very minor voice in amongst the tumultuous noise of people who enjoy this weather.

“People complain about the cold all the time, so it isn’t that unreasonable for me to complain about it being too warm.”

He said: “The rest of my family are sun worshippers. I can’t stand it.

“Luckily living in Northern Ireland we don’t get that much sun.”