Leaf on road embedded in ice
Leaf on road, embedded in ice.

Walking around is very difficult, now that the snow has all compacted and become icy and translucent.  I haven’t seen ice like this for, … well, since I bought my frost-free fridge way back when.  In some areas, the ice looks quite thick.  If it wasn’t so lumpy, I’d think it was a lot like the ice on an ice-skating rink.  It’s becoming very tricky navigating between the icy pavement and walking on the road.  Sometimes, you get more grip walking on the road, but then you have to watch out for the cars.  Powdery snow provides better grip and I’ve learnt to avoid anything that looks grey or translucent.  Anyway, I think falling over is to be expected and I’ve had my first fall already.  Other than a slightly bruised ego and sore palms, all is well.

School closed for the little one today, and he was very excited.  He spent the morning sledging down the Terrace Gardens with tons of other kids, who’d also found their way there.  Parents were all huddled in the Hollyhock Cafe and keeping warm.  I think the little one could have gone on for hours.  Thankfully, I trooped up and whisked off for a hot lunch, only to find out that his gloves, jeans and socks were wet.  That was the end of sledging for the day. and it was straight into a hot bath for him.

Not a lot of cars were about in Richmond today. It was like the week of the Christmas break.  People aren’t venturing out unless it’s necessary.  I’m taking extra care with traffic at the moment, I don’t trust that cars will stop in time.  Most drivers are very careful, though some drivers speed given these particular traffic conditions.  Whilst I haven’t yet seen cars that are stuck, I’ve seen more than a few cars spin their tyres before they are able to get going, which also gives you an indication of road conditions.

I wouldn’t say London is grinding to a halt, but definitely things are slowing down. Thank goodness for modern technology that allow people to work from home, otherwise it really would come to a stop. But as other Europeans have told me, it’s not a problem in other countries who manage to deal with it.  It’s only the UK that doesn’t have its act together. And media has turned its attention to how much grit and gas Britain has to cope with the cold. Anyway, they really do love talking about the weather and there are now whole 15 minute segments devoted to the weather with cuts to reporters live on location talking about what how this extreme weather is affecting the lives of people.  The thing is they’ve had this kind of cold weather before, so why does an extended version of it take everyone by surprise? Aren’t people generally prepared for winter?

Anyway,  the discussion of a lack of grit and gas will, no doubt, be turned into a political issue, given election year, and no doubt, the media will have a field day.  At least they’ve stopped talking about the recession for the moment.