Richmond Green

Apparently, we have been in the grip of a big freeze for the last 4 weeks.  I did not know that.  Probably not watching the news, probably thought it was normal.  Sometimes it was really cold, sometimes not too bad.  And because of the Christmas season etc, I’ve been mainly indoors.

Except this week has been really cold. Try as I might with the heating, I can’t seem to get it warm enough. So I’ve now taken to rugging up with an extra sweater, slippers, hot water bottle, and my latest addition, a beanie for my head at night. Yup, it’s a very cool look.

I’ve also learnt that it’s not a good idea to turn the heating down too low when you leave the flat as it’s really cold when you get back and it takes ages heating up.  Of course, there’s the timer, but I haven’t figured it out yet.  Easier just to turn the thermostat up or down.  The curtains are always drawn, not for privacy but to keep the cold out and the heat in.  All these things I’m now learning about.

Today, it snowed again. It was the 2nd day of school and the little one was very keen to find out if school was closed. He’d heard about schools being closed in other parts of the country.  I think he just wanted school to be closed just so he can go back to Australia and tell his friends that he missed school on account of the snow! Alas, no.  Off to school he went. Built snow fortresses, but learnt a few things too.

I’m learning about snow with the observation skills of an adult and the wonder of a ten-year old.  Here’s my son’s description of snow:  “Snow is really fun!” But I feel, as a writer, I should attempt to be a bit more descriptive in communicating snow.

Snow is very light and fluffy.  When making snowballs, I thought it’d be heavier somehow, but it wasn’t.  Snow is so white when it accumulates on the landscape.  It really changes the look, colour and sound of your environment.  Sounds are definitely muffled, a bit like being in a padded room.  At night, snow is so reflective that you can see details into the night that you couldn’t before, and there’s such an eerie glow as well.

Light falling snow is really pretty.  Heavy falling snow not so pretty, especially when there’s wind about and it’s falling on you.  It gets into your eyes and stings a bit.  Then there’s snow that’s been stomped on and compacted on the ground.  It gets quite slippery though not as slippery as ice. Navigating through what is pavement and road can be a bit tricky as the snow hides the visual cues you take for granted normally.  Walking home with shopping and an umbrella in the cold is definitely hard work physically.

I haven’t yet driven in the snow and you know what?  It really does not look like fun.  Saw one of probably thousands of rear-end prangs today. Nothing major, just the car didn’t stop in time and hit the car in front.

In my little world, we are managing so far with the big freeze.  Admittedly, we’ve not had to travel by car or train though we will on the weekend. Fingers crossed that the weather will improve, though it looks like snow will continue to fall over the next few days.