And so, after making a brief appearance last Friday, on Saturday it came in earnest.
'What are you banging on about you daft wombat?' I hear you cry.
Why snow, my dear...... and lots of it. At dawn on Saturday morning, it was a bit frosty. By mid-morning the snow started, and by mid-afternoon we had copped about 9" of the stuff. It was truly awesome.
Now, I know that all of you 'hard-as-coffin-nails' Canadians are going to think that I am a complete pansy for being overawed by 9" of snow, but this is the bally UK, godammit. We thrive off adversity, and as such would never dream of using winter tyres, snow chains, or gritting the roads. Jeez, if we did that, life would be easy and we would have nothing to whine about.
Instead, we got 9" snow, and were completely poleaxed. Before moving to Oxfordshire, I lived in London for many years, and the degree of poleaxation (I probably need to point out that I invented that mutation of the verb by the way) there, was considerably less than living in the countryside.
It was London for chrissake. The nation's Capital. The government couldn't be seen to allow 7.5 million people to be snowed in. That would be totally rude. So Terminator-style snow ploughs would be deployed throughout the city if so much as a flake fluttered upon a pavement.
But living in the countryside is a totally different animal. We get 9" of snow, and the Oxfordshire District Council scratches its head and concludes, "we could save £50 by not gritting the road into Forest Hill and the upside is that there are only 750 people living there, so if they all died of starvation, it probably wouldn't make it to the papers. Huzzar!" Ok, so the local councillors might not have shouted Huzzar, but they decided not to grit the roads.
And I know that for sure. A gritter drove past my house yesterday (one of the only vehicles who could make it through the snow) and they didn't have their 'grit spreading' button turned on. Bastards.
Anyway, in the spirit of 'embrace what you can't control', I have taken some pictures for you to have a look at. I like to think of myself as a bit of a Jeanne d'Arc type person when it comes to stoicism in the face of adversity.
Pic.No.1 The road through Forest Hill village on Saturday afternoon. The local pub is that building in the distance with the chimney. Thank god, I think I may be able to make it
Pic.No.2. This is the A40. It is normally a four-lane dual carriageway into Oxford city, and has two laybys which are frequented by doggers
Pic.No.3. I climbed to the top of Forest Hill and this is the view from the peak. I was a bit pissed off because snow in photos doesn't look as deep as snow in real life
Pic.No.4 School's out and then it snows. Life doesn't get much better for five year olds because they don't worry about starving to death one bit
Pic.No.5. This is Izzy on her sledge. She isn't deformed, she just has her mouth wide open.... for some obscure reason
Pic.No.6. Izzy wasn't at all worried that Oxfordshire District Council had decided that gritting the roads to Forest Hill wasn't a 'Priority 1'
Pic.No.7. 'Izzy kiddo, can you dig my car out of the snow? I fancy going for lunch somewhere'. Child labour is great. And you can see how deep the snow is in this picture.
Pic.No.8. After Izzy had dug out the car, Steve, me and her all went for lunch at the Old Red Lion in Tetsworth
Pic.No.9 On the way there, we encountered a flock of crows in the middle of the road. It was like an Alfred Hitchcock movie .... except that I don't have blonde hair ..... and the crows moved when I drove at them instead of pecking me death
Pic.No.10. Inside the Old Red Lion. The new landlady was very friendly and had done a fabulous job of redesigning the interior. The only complaint (I am English for godsake!) was that the place was a bit cold. I had to eat with my coat on.
Pic.No.11. The Old Red Lion specialises in carvery meals ..... yummy my favourite, and they do them fabulously at this place. This is a picture of the door that leads into the carvery. You can see the hot plates with a selection of roasted meat through the door
Pic.No.12. Awww, look at Izzy. She is like a little wallflower. Yeh, I was being ironic.. more like Attila the Hun. All she needs to complete the picture is one of those spikey balls on the end of a chain, and an opposing army.
So yeh, chaos reigns in Oxfordshire and the forecast doesn't predict any change soon, so it looks like the snow is here to stay. Excellent!
In the meantime, a lovely reader of my blog, Dulcie McNulty (there's got to be some Scottish descendency there eh?), sent me these of the snow scenes around her house in Deedee, Montana, USA.
Pic.No.13 What do you reckon, is it worse in the UK or Montana?
Pic.No.14. Another Montana pic. I like the fact that I am not suffering on my own. In that respect, I am not like Jeanne d'Arc at all
Thanks Dulcie for sending them in! If you were in the UK I would snog you. Actually, I can't back that up.
So me dears, how is winter treating you? Have you got any horrors that you want to share with me?
P.S. I don't know how useful this is to you, but the Blogspot spellcheck does not recognise the word dogging.
Anne Dickens | The day after yesterday