I like to get up at half past six each morning. My carer comes at 7am for an hour during which she gets my breakfast, tidies round, puts on the washing machine and helps me wash or shower and dress - she has it all timed to perfection and manages to do it all inside the hour.
But at this time of the year there is another reason for my rising time. I like to rise with the sun. I can sit in my chair after pulling back the curtains and I can watch as gradually the black sky gets a ribbon of daylight and I can watch the ribbon get wider and wider as I listen to the weather forecaster on Breakfast TV tell me what kind of day to expect.
We have been so lucky here for the past week (hope I am not tempting fate). The Somerset levels are seriously flooded, Scotland has had heavy snowfalls (I expect the skiers might be pleased about this) and the West of England has borne the brunt of the very cold weather here.
Ice? Well yes there has been plenty of that. I watch old ladies - shortly after daybreak-slithering along the footpath past my window. The path is icy, there is traffic about, so on they go with their sticks and their dogs - pooh bags handy. As soon as possible (that is as soon as a pooh is in the bag) they turn for home. I fear for their safety - breakages - hips, legs, arms - are not to even be contemplated - both ambulance men and nurses are on strike today so falling in the roadway means disaster.
After my carer has gone and The Times has arrived I do the Mind Games (while my brain is in good order) but it is cold in the sitting room although the Central Heating is on. (in spite of having on six layers of clothing - sorry chaps here - please do feel free to skip the next bit of this sentence- bra, vest, pure wool jumper, sweater, fleecy body warmer and shawl ). Yesterday I had an e mail from the gas board telling me how to unfreeze the outside gas pipe if necessary. Thinking about this I go over to feel the radiator - sigh of relief it is red hot. Suddenly Nature's back up appears from the side of my left hand curtain. Yes the sun - and within five minutes the room is beautifully warm. Deep blue sky like yesterday.
Only half an hour to go before my weakness kicks in - just time to put on this post. My weakness? Cadbury's Drinking Chocolate - drunk with either a packet of crisps or a 2-finger Kit Kat. Yes I know it is unnecessary but my excuse? It is three and a half hours since I had my Flahavan's organic Porridge with a banana, and another two to go before my fish cakes with new potatoes and peas which my carer has left in the microwave are eaten for my lunch. Life is not all miserable when you reach 90 - trust me!