The many and various ways I pass the time now has a new addition. Usually it involves drinking coffee whilst sitting at a computer keeping in touch with chums, or sipping wine sitting on our tiny terrace catching the sun, and wondering what else I can do to avoid any cleaning or tidying or putting away of stuff and things that aren't even MINE. And now I am going to type this blog. Provided that doesn't become a chore as well, in which case...

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Monochrome mid-Wales

It started to snow here yesterday as dusk fell and the darkness deepened, so that the temperature dropped just the one or two degrees needed to switch day-long rain to sleet and then sloppy snow.  We pulled the curtains and ignored it, concentrating more on ourselves, our dinners, our pets and the TV than what was going on outside the windows. 

The Dog loves TV as well.  I have mentioned that before, on here.  Some dogs just don't "see" TV apparently, or perhaps they ignore it as it doesn't smell, but ours has always been fascinated by it.  If we are on a commercial channel he is particularly thrilled, as he adores the ads.  They are that bit louder, so the change in volume alerts him, he rouses himself from his doze and stares avidly at the screen, as SO many ads have animals in them.  Here he is on the qui vive waiting to see what fetches up in the ad break by way of threat or prey

Yes, I know that looks like a bleached-out variant of the blue screen of death, but it's just what turned up on the camera during the exposure.  I don't like using flash.  Earlier in the evening we had lost our TV signal for a short while, which is what happens if you retire to the hilly green loveliness at the slap-bang centre of Wales.  If your nearest transmitter or signal booster loses power you've had it, as telly can't seem to see round corners past the lumps and bumps to the next one.  Or something la la like that.

We'd had a half-hearted half inch of white when the Dog stepped out into the garden to ablute and go grrrr just before we all retired to the night.  Just eight hours later we awoke to this

which is the totally natural untouched black and white view we had at 7.30am from the study window.  A few dozen miles to the North East of us are Mold and Wrexham, the twin foci of yesterday's oval of intense snow in Wales, where they had an all-day white-out.  Ten inches fell - with drifting.  Calamitous travel conditions were created.  The day-time shift of the various emergency services must have been exhausted when they finally clocked off from digging out or towing vehicles, closing roads and generally coming to the rescue, of commuters especially.

But today is Saturday, praise be to the working calendar!  In our neck of the woods, no-one is stirring except on foot.  Cars are still where they were parked last night, transmuted into smooth white mounds like jelly moulds, and a soothing muffled quality has descended on the backing track of daily life.

The football supporters of Wrexham have a journey to Wembly to make tomorrow.  I am keen that the snowplough train can lead the way to get them there, but here and now, Goldenoldenlady is going nowhere.  The Husband is creaking the upstairs floorboards doing something hobbity and husbandish, but I cannot be troubled to enquire further.  The Dog is having forty winks before he settles down to some concentrated snoozing to be followed by a half-hour's shut-eye.  There is still coffee in the pot, food in the fridge and larder, wine on the rack.  If we want to be "snowed-in" we can be.

I do hope no-one else feels under an pressure to go far, by motor, today.  Is someone in labour, or respitory distress, or pumping arterial blood on the bedroom carpet ?  No?  Then stop where you are and enjoy the snowiest late March weekend for decades.  It'll be worth it.  Like times long past.  In the 1960s - the decade of my childhood growing up in an old stone weaver's house on a Lancashire hillside - March and even April snow could and did descend quite often.  It was the norm, almost, so this is very nostalgic spring weather for me.  I intend not to resent it, or at the very least not today.


  1. And Goldeneoldenlady's big sister is going nowhere either. She hasn't even been out to check on the lane yet, as she knows it will be blocked. :-) When the snow finally stops will be soon enough to venture out.

    Lovely post, Baby Sis, with its cars like jelly moulds. :-) You really must do more writing, you know.

  2. Mmmn. There are six long chapters of what was supposed to grow into a novel on an unreadable hardrive in landfill somewhere. I started it in 1996, got going great guns, then I left The Daughter's Father in 1997, and the PC it was typed on. I got the PC in the divorce in 1999 as he had vastly up-graded so it was an unneeded and unused spare (rather like Ann Hathaway being left Shakespeare's Second Best Bed). Sometime in 2000 I had a look at the 25,000 or so words, but realised I'd changed far too much in the intervening years to carry on writing in the mood and vein I'd started it in.

    I decided that comic writing is the really tough stuff to pull off, so abandoned it. Which is why bloggers like Pearl ( have me enthralled and entertained in equal measure. She is another Alan Bennett, sitting on buses, tuning her ear for dialogue. Love it!

    1. Oh, I know Pearl. :-) I've been following her for ages. Such an ear for dialogue and an eye for telling detail.

    2. One of the stories emerging after the astonishing March snow around Wrexham, as metioned above

    3. I saw that and it drove home just how reliant almost all of us are on having the utilities functioning properly. I reckon we could keep the room-heater going on old furniture for quite a while. :-)

  3. Or even new furniture, needs must...

    When I think how you in your mid-20s lived in an old (and let's face it, in keen need of modernisation) farmhouse in Cumbria with your DS as a December-born new baby, all on your own from Monday to Friday but for a kind neighbour or two, whilst your DH was many, many miles away all week doing his Dip Ed (and did you even have a phone?) one wonders when reliance became over-reliance.

    Reading between the lines it seems a 999 call was made, and yet no-one was ill. Panicked, yes. Ill, no.

  4. Early 20s, Baby Sis - we were both 22 when DS was born. :-) We didn't get a phone until 1977 when our father was ill and we needed to be contactable. I think we were all used to being more self-reliant back then and the lack of mod cons meant we didn't have much to miss when the power went off. When DS was a small baby we wrapped up warm and lived and slept in one heated room.