Everyone knows Australia to be a warm sunny land of perpetual sunshine.
Everyone is wrong. Canberra may be sunny in winter but these clear sunny days bring nights of sharp frost and chilly mornings.
Not a problem in itself, but the housebuilders of Canberra also seem to have fallen for the myth of Australia being a land of perpetual warmth and sunshine, and build houses without decent heating and insulation.
Well we've retrofitted insulation, central heating - a ludicrous ducted air system that sends toilet rolls fluttering in the breeze, but it's what people have - and double glazing, and still our lounge room is cold.
So we've turned to the wood stove fitted by the previous owners - a slow combustion stove that once it's heated keeps going and puts out a respectable amount of heat.
The stove of course burns wood, hard wood. Last winter, which was cold, we bought half a tonne and possibly the same again in bags from servos and hardware stores and that kept us going.
So this year we bought a half tonne load at the start of May, but seem to have gone through most of it already.
So this time we bought a tonne, which turned up midday Sunday, meaning Sunday afternoon was spent wheel barrowing up loads of wood to the wood shed.
The last bit's not quite true - about three quarters of the way through the wheel barrowing exercise, a couple of my neighbours who were having a kickabout with their teenage sons came over and started helping. Just turned up and did it, meaning we got the last quarter tonne shifted in about 10 minutes. Shows what neighbours are for.
The wood shed is now stacked nearly to the roof with wood - which surely should keep us warm through the rest of winter ...