This glorious summer weather being enjoyed in the north is a double-edged sword.
For those of us who love long hot days, it's bliss and a hark back to those endless summers of our childhood. Everything slows down; you simply can't hurry in this heat.
I never normally feel like eating ice blocks, but the haze from the footpath and the particular smell that it carries triggers a Pavlovian response for a Fruju that has me deviating into the nearest dairy - although it's quite the shock to be asked for $2.50. Two dollars 50! It feels like the last time I had a Fruju they were 20 cents.
• 'Widespread extreme dryness': Why drought has come to NZ
• The big dry: Drought in Northland and extreme fire danger in Dunedin
• Running dry: Steep rise in costs to fill water tanks in drought-hit Coromandel
• More water restrictions imposed
I love heating up enough to jump into the water, and then warming up again, lying in the sun, not reading a book. The same book can last me all through January and February as I only seem to be able to read the same two lines before I zone out - it's the closest to meditating that I can get.
Summer is my season and when we get these beautiful, sunny days, I'm grateful. Until I head up north and see the downside to the golden weather.
The Far North is in drought and nobody knows when the rain is coming. At our place, the ground is riven with deep fissures. The last time I saw earth cracked like that was when I was in Tanzania - it almost looks painful.
We're on tank water where I am - most people are - and it's one of the first things people ask at the moment - how's your water holding up? There are signs all through Opononi urging people to conserve water and pamphlets in the cafes and dairies and pub doing the same.
The good people of Kaikohe are bracing for the harsh reality of queuing to collect water from emergency tanks as the water situation in the town is critical. The council says it has already breached minimum water flow levels at the Waioro Stream, the primary raw water source for Kaikohe, and it has reached limits for the local acquifer. Without a good solid dumping of rain, the council warns that Kaikohe's water will run out. In that case, schools may have to shut and some businesses may have to shut their doors.
The Far North District Council has imposed water restrictions in Kaitaia and is looking at restrictions in Rawene and Omanaia in the near future.
You really appreciate how precious water is when you know you have a finite supply until the rain comes - and that's not such a bad thing.
The "if it's yellow, let it mellow" rule is in place in the loos in our house. The dishes are washed in a bucket and then the water is tipped onto a chosen fruit tree. Same when we're showering. Shower time is short and sweet and the bucket is placed under the showerhead to capture every spare drop.
It's a dilemma choosing which trees get the grey water - they can't all get a bucket, so if the trees are fruiting or flowering, they go to the top of the list and I'm working my way down. The rest of the trees on the property, the mānuka and kānuka and rata and nikau palms and cabbage trees, will just have to survive or die. They're used to harsh conditions, so hopefully they'll make it 'til the rains come.
Rain is forecast for Monday week, but nobody's putting the house on it actually arriving. It's been promised before and has failed to materialise.
I'm lucky. I'm heading back to the city today and I will be able to turn on a tap and water will appear. My neighbours will have to continue to ration and restrict themselves until the weather gives them a break.
The headlines say this is a one-in-80-year drought, in the same way the floods in Southland are being described as unprecedented. But floodwaters swept through the streets of Gore in 1913 and 1984 - and the Far North has sweltered and baked in the past. The land adapts and endures. Whether humans can do so as successfully is another matter.
• Kerre McIvor Mornings, Newstalk ZB, weekdays 9am-noon.