Sunday, 5 February 2012

Winter Wonderland

Well they said it would snow and my God did it. Woke up to a winter wonderland this morning and loved it.

Yesterday was cold but beautifully bright so I took the opportunity to refill the bird feeders in preparation for the predicted snow. Andrew and Peter decided to fix the puncture Andrew had on the back of his bike but further inspection showed the tyre needed replacing as it had a whacking big nail stuck in the side wall. So the wheel was slung into the back of the car and off they went leaving me to my own devices for an hour or so. I used the time to do a few bits and pieces around the house that I'm not really allowed to do, polishing, dusting, and then trawled through my recipe books looking for a really nice chicken casserole to make.

The afternoon was spent watching the clouds come over, white and heavy, and looking out for the first few tell tale flakes of snow. We'd been promised up to ten centimeters but exactly where and when it would fall was a bit vague. By the time it got dark there still wasn't any sign and I felt a bit disappointed, as long as  everyone is home and safe I quite like a bit of snow so was rather looking forward to it. My relaxed attitude soon disappeared though when Andrew announced that he was going out to Luton with some mates, he wouldn't be dissuaded and left around five thirty and within half an hour is started to snow. I wasn't that concerned because the snow was thin and light and I could hear the trains running up and down. However by nine the snow had got thicker and was beginning to settle. Thankfully Andrew and his mates have more sense than I give them credit for and he returned home around nine thirty. By the time we went to bed there was at least an inch covering the ground and it was still falling. I actually felt a little excited because I love snow provided I don't have to travel in it.

Andrew suffered the effects of the snow this morning. He turned up for his paper round only to discover the papers had not arrived so he returned home and waited for the newsagent to call when they came in. It was almost ten when the call came and it took him ages to do the delivery because he couldn't use his bike and it was heavy going underfoot. He arrived home cold and wet and definitely not as thrilled with the snow as he had been a couple of hours before.

The other person I'm concerned about is Laurence who is currently working nights. He would have left work for home around eight this morning so at least he wouldn't be driving in the dark. I am tempted to ring him but if he is asleep after a long night shift that will not make me very popular. I suspect if he had a problem getting home we'd have heard about it by now so I can only assume he is OK. He usually rings us on Sunday so I'll just have to wait for his call.

The cats are also not in the best frame of mind. Too cold to go out and take their constitutionals they are far from sleepy, instead they are bad tempered and spar with each other at every given opportunity. They have been out, there are paw prints in the snow, but by the look of them it was a quick trip to do the necessary and straight back in again. When not glaring at each other they glare at me as though it is all my fault. I have put some extra food down in the hope they will eat well and then want to sleep it off. If they do we might actually get a few hours peace.

So excited it is the start of the six nations rugby this weekend and Wales are playing Ireland today. The odds are a little against us, but then they always are when it comes to Ireland, but we have beaten them and in recent memory. I have claimed the sofa and have crisps, popcorn and a small bottle of cider on standby. Of course I would prefer it if Wales win but whatever the outcome I'm going to love it.

Of course not everyone loves the snow, especially those that have to get to work in it. However this being a Sunday you would expect fewer problems wouldn't you. This though is Britain and one thing Britain doesn't do is snow. At the first sign of the first flake air, rail and road travel are thrown into chaos. Part of the problem is with the British way of thinking. As a nation we firmly believe 'it will never happen to us' and dislike being told what to do. As a consequence pleas from the authorities to stay indoors unless the journey is urgent usually fall on deaf ears and before you know it there are dozens of badly prepared motorists stuck on a motorway somewhere. Countries who have heavy snow falls every year don't do this. At the beginning of the winter they begin to stock pile nonperishable food stuffs, candles, primus stoves and calor gas. They listen to the forecasts and if they are told to stay at home they batten down the hatches and stay put. The Brits go 'rubbish it'll never get that bad they are just panicking' and are then amazed to find themselves stuck in a blizzard in a tee shirt. And what makes this situation sadder is from year to year we don't learn from these mistakes.

We are expecting more snow overnight and then a thaw. I will doing what I did last night. Snuggling under a duvet on the settee, drinking hot chocolate and watching a DVD. Stay warm.