A quarter past one at lunch time and for the first time since I got up this morning it has just stopped snowing. It is that powdery snow (good for skiing apparently, but not good for snowballs) which is blowing around in a much stronger easterly wind. In addition it is absolutely bitterly cold. I am not going out. I feel sorry for Tess, who keeps asking to go out, runs up and down the path, daren't go on to the lawn where the snow is deeper than her little legs, does a quick wee and runs back in. I have just had an e mail from the dog walking service to say they are not coming today. I have rung friend J, who only lives a short distance down the road, and she is going to take Tess for a short walk for me in about an hour. Thank goodness. And thank you J too.
I read in this morning's Times (which was absolutely on time after no appearance yesterday) where a Headmaster of a Private Day School in the South of the country had written to parents inviting them to keep their children away from school if they wanted them to play in the snow. He said memories of snow like this would last them all their lives and would be more important than a couple of days schooling while this weather remains. I must say that I agree with him. Children kept in lessons will spend more time looking out of the window and longing to be out there playing in it than they will on concentrating on what they are supposed to be learning. (when I was a child the classroom windows were too high up for kids to look out and see what was happening outside!)
It is snowing again - five minute break is all that we have had. Outside in the back garden sits a hen fieldfare. Her feather are all fluffed out to keep warm. She has been here off and on for a couple of days. Next door has two berried bushes and both are covered, but she has made no attempt to eat them. She can fly because when I stood in the window and she saw me she flew off into a nearby tree. Is she sick I wonder? Fieldfares move around in flocks - in fact there was a flock in the trees opposite but she made no attempt to join them. I fully expect that one morning I shall find her dead somewhere in the garden.
Nature can be so cruel and as several of you have said - lambing is about to get underway; in fact is well underway in many areas. Many farmers I suspect will lamb indoors (if they have anything like enough room to do so) but that also has its problems. Sheep are outdoor animals - indoors brings on all kinds of threats of dire things like pheumonia. A worrying time for all farmer I am sure.
Folk like me, long retired, warm, plenty of food in store, no real worries, are the lucky ones really. The only problem for me is cabin fever and luckily my son has been unable to get to work this week. Yesterday he called round and stayed to chat for an hour, today he rang me and chatted for an hour.
Similarly, in the evenings, various friends and also my niece, ring and chat - thank goodness for the telephone!
No end in sight at present for the cold weather - but it is March 1st today (white rabbits!) - meteorologically the first day of Spring (obviously postponed) so I am glad I am still sticking to the old-fashioned March 21st. So everyone - it will be Spring in three weeks time - can't come soon enough can it