Either this winter has been mild or my internal thermostat has adjusted itself again and rendered me almost insensible to Sydney's brand of cold.
To wit: I have slept under cotton quilts with cotton flannel sheets all season, and worn a wool coat only once.
I've spent the rest of the winter in a the Banana Republic trench coat I bought in New York eighteen months ago. I'd never owned a trench coat and was a little sceptical of their recurring khaki inclusion on every ten-garments-you-must-own list.
There was no recognisable gap in my life for a trench coat, or so I thought. I bought it on a New York whim, seduced by the way it had been styled on the store mannequin - with some slouchy blue trousers and a carelessly light pink cotton jumper - and end up wearing just about every day last winter and every day this winter.
So it was a disaster of middle class proportions when the dry cleaner lost the belt. It doesn't work without the belt. I tried every thing - leather belts, velvet belts, no belts, unbuttoned - but nothing looked right.
So I've been wearing other coats but I don't look right. I feel odd in my clothes, odd on the train, odd walking through the park to work.
I could bear it no longer and at lunch time today I cracked and bought another trench.
It looks entirely unremarkable, almost identical to my American trench.
Except it has a belt.
The quilts are more interesting, at least at first glance.