The Winter of My Discontent

Well, it’s January 7th, and I’m just going to hold my hands up here and admit that I haven’t left the house for five days now. Other than to take this photo, that is:

Obligatory “Look, I am standing in snow!” photo

Did you know it’s been SNOWING here in the UK, readers? Ha! What am I saying? Of COURSE you knew! Because for the past few weeks, there’s been only one topic of conversation amongst us Brits. Can you guess what it is? Yes? It’s SNOW! Someone please shoot me…

It started snowing while Terry and I were on holiday. That’s almost four weeks ago now, for those of you playing along at home. It basically hasn’t stopped since, which is actually pretty unusual for this part of the world. Sure, it’s always cold (and I DO mean “always”), but snow is quite rare, and when it does fall, it’s normally gone within a day or two, much to my joy. This time, though? This time it decided to stick around, see in the New Year with us, maybe try and ruin Christmas… stupid old SNOW.

When our flight landed at Glasgow airport, there wasn’t much snow in evidence. “Ha!” we thought. “We have missed the worst of it! Media was exaggerating! Parents were exaggerating! Airline which kept us stranded for 17 hours was exaggerating!” Then we drove into our street, and straight into a huge pile of SNOW, which we remained stuck in for the next 30 minutes, until our kind neighbour finally took pity on us and came to dig us out. Which just goes to show what WE knew, eh?

Two days later, we pulled out of the driveway to head to my parents’ house for Christmas, and instantly got stuck in the SNOW. Our neighbour helped push us out. Then we drove to my parents’ house and got stuck in THEIR driveway My dad helped push us out. Then? We drove home. And got stuck in our driveway. Our neighbour…actually, you know what? Just fill in the rest of this yourself, OK?  My point is: it’s not been much fun. Because this country isn’t really used to prolonged periods of heavy snow, we just aren’t prepared for it. Like, AT ALL. This means that our street still hasn’t been cleared since that initial snowfall while we were away. A couple of feet of snow has now turned into solid ice, and is absolutely treacherous to walk on. So we…. haven’t been. Walking, that is. We’ve not been having our rubbish bins emptied either, because the council (Who’ve failed to clear the road) now say they can’t access the street. One bin WAS finally emptied today, but the other’s getting on for four weeks now, and, you know, that’s not much fun, especially not over Christmas.

The upshot of all of this is that we’re currently more or less housebound. We CAN leave the house, but it takes such a long time to dig the car out, deal with the horrible conditions on the main roads (lots of abandoned cars lying around because people get stuck and can’t move them) plus the small matter of having to walk on a virtual ice-rink, that it barely seems worth the trouble. Of course, in our case, this isn’t too big a deal, because we’re fortunate enough to be able to work from home (I don’t think I’ve ever been more grateful for that fact than I am this week!), but I really pity the poor people who’re basically having to risk life and limb every morning just to get to work. Did I mention how much I hate the SNOW? And the winter in general? They’re saying it’s the worst winter in 40 years, and it feels a bit like being in an End of the World movie.

My only comfort in all of this is the time I’ve spent planning our next holiday, to somewhere where there is no SNOW. Well, that and my new boots.

My in-laws, meanwhile, travelled home from Greece yesterday. They WERE supposed to be flying from Athens to London Heathrow, and getting a connecting flight to Edinburgh, but the connecting flight was cancelled (due to SNOW), so they had to re-book for another, much later flight, which would have involved an overnight stay at Heathrow. I say WOULD have because unfortunately THAT flight was cancelled too.  Then their flight from Athens to London had to be diverted to….

Glasgow! This was really, really lucky for them, because Glasgow is obviously a whole lot closer to home than London is, but not so lucky for the Londoners, obviously. Remember that Melting Terry predicted last year? I really hope it’s coming soon.

Roll on Springtime…

24 Comments

  • Gemma says:

    I’m also not liking winter, but I love your dress. Love it!
    .-= Gemma´s last blog ..Coming Up: 6 Day US Beauty Giveaway =-.

  • Tracey says:

    Look at the positive side. Your dress and boots are fabulous.
    .-= Tracey´s last blog ..Bathroom Part 3 =-.

  • Krista says:

    Sounds awful. I usually try my best to be positive during winter time -I have to, winter is like half of the year here. Which basically means that I've lived in the dark and in cold for half of my life! Snow is fine with me, I can deal with it. The clearing of the roads etc. works well here -It has to! But what gets to me is the freezing cold. You can't do anything. No skiing, no ice-skating, nothing, no happy winter wonder land. In order to survive (well at least for me) you need to dress as if you're at the North Pole, you have to breath through a scarf and bat your eyelashes like crazy so that they don't freeze together. Take comfort from the fact that as much as it sucks in the UK, some people have it even worse… Good luck in the snow. I'm gonna go plan my move to the tropics now;)

  • I love your boots and dress too! Where did you get the dress?

    We haven't had nearly as much snow in the midlands, although I am having my second snow day today (well, I worked from home yesterday but was supposed to go to London today for a meeting and have had to cancel it, it's just too icy to be getting stuck on trains) but I'm fed up of the cold too. Always having to wear a hat is wrecking my hair, which is annoying because I got a nice new haircut about a fortnight ago. Also, I got some lovely new shoes at Christmas which I haven't been able to wear yet because it's too cold! Wow, those are some really superficial reasons there, but valid all the same. Come along now Spring :)
    .-= Roisin Muldoon´s last blog ..Listen, to be believable you have to get a furry hat and a snow machine! =-.

  • Mhairi says:

    How rubbish is this weather?!?

    As a courier I absolutely hate this snow. It was fun for a day or two when it first came, and when I got a day off work as it had snowed so much during the night that I couldn't get my car out.

    When I have been stuck at home I have been looking into otherways of earning a living whilst working from home. I have never been mre jealous of you guys than in the last 4 weeks.

    Happy New Year by the way.

    x
    .-= Mhairi´s last blog ..2010 – it is here already. =-.

  • Camilla says:

    Totally love your dress. It looks very Westwood inspired.

    And yeah, this snow. Jeez. It has never snowed like this in as long as I can remember. It looks very pretty but I am not a lover of the cold. Bring on summer!

    • diane says:

      I just came on to leave basically the exact same comment, which was going to be "LOVE the dress! Very early Westwood, just lovely" and also I hate this time of year. HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE.
      .-= diane´s last blog ..Hello! I’m Diane Shipley, a freelance journalist, online editor and voracious blogger. I… =-.

  • myra says:

    i love the dress too – you look very cute in it. the colours are great on you. like you i have not left the house for 4 days (apart to go to college yesterday, but didn't dare risk my precious little punto on our ice rink drive, so took a taxi on the grounds that they are much more used to driving in poor road conditions than me, and he picked me up at the roundabout which is more slushy. it is minus 4 degrees today and have taken some ice drop photos in my back garden – see i did actually leave the house, like you. There are ice drops on the vegetation and the clothes line lol. glad that like me you are warm inside. what are you doing about food, or are you a hoarder.

    • Amber says:

      We get our shopping delivered, and the strange thing about that is that Asda have been managing to access the street (albeit with delays), even although the council apparently can't! So we're not going without, but we are starting to get cabin fever!

      • Selina says:

        Maybe the council should contract the rubbish collection out to ASDA, they could deliver your groceries AND collect the rubbish at the same time. If they were really clever they could even grit the streets while they were at it!
        .-= Selina´s last blog ..Review: Z Palettes =-.

  • Rock Hyrax says:

    You have my sympathies: my council isn't a great believer in gritting either, but at least we're in a warm part of the country so there's been no getting stuck yet this year – I hate to think what it would be like if we had to deal with "real" snow.

    btw, is that you breath in the top picture or just an artefact?

  • Hayley says:

    LOVE the boots! The weather's been similar here in the states where I live. It seems like it has been snowing for two weeks straight, and even though we SHOULD be prepared for all the snow (it happens every year), we are not. The county won't plow the road; we're lucky if a farmer decides to run his tractor down the road to at least make it passable for ONE vehicle. I feel your pain on this snow matter.
    .-= Hayley´s last blog ..Quarter Century Mark =-.

    • david says:

      Binwatch – main wheelybin last emptied 6th December. And counting.

      No new snow since 27th December.

      Very cold though – we have not been above freezing at all since well before Christmas. -11 deg C now. Max today was a balmy -5 deg C. Sunshine from sunrise to sunset.
      .-= david´s last blog ..A Cold Snap =-.

  • Steph says:

    It's the cold I hate more than anything (no central heating in our house, sadly) – mind you, I saw on the news today that parts of Scotland are expected to have temperatures of -20C tonight, and instantly counted my blessings (it'll be a rather more manageable -3 where I am). We haven't had too much snow, but enough to stop my dad from going in to work. Yesterday he decided to walk six miles to his doctor's appointment because it wasn't safe to drive and the buses weren't running – cue me wailing 'But if you die in the snow, who will feed me?' to which he responded 'You can eat the cats.' I half expected him to say 'I'm just going outside and may be some time' but thankfully he arrived home in one piece.

    Beautiful outfit, by the way!

  • Amy says:

    Oh wow, I love that dress! Love! And I just spent three weeks in MINNESOTA (-15 degrees Fahrenheit! I have no idea what that is in Celsius!) and now that I'm back in Seattle it feels like a heatwave.

    Ok, this has nothing to do with winter or pretty dresses, but I've always thought "now is the winter of our discontent" meant something like "our discontent is now over" (as I never actually studied Richard III I really have no basis for this assumption), and since you always do clever titles (and studied literature) can you confirm? Or just tell me to get my butt over to a Shakespeare study group. ;)
    .-= Amy´s last blog ..Northern Nights =-.

    • Amber says:

      I've never studied it either, I'm afraid – I just use quotes for my own ends, probably to the utter horror of more learned people!

      • Ella says:

        Heh. Being a medieval lit major, I had to jump in! The whole sentence actually says "Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer by this sun of York." So it is indeed the winter of your discontent (and all of Britain's, it seems), but hopefully the sun will come out again (though probably not because of the rise to power of the Duke of York). ;-)

        On a normal note, that dress is amazing, and I'm jealous that you snagged it from Primark, of all places. Since your horrible experience with rude people, I've New-Years-Resolutioned (how's that for contortions of the English language?) to comment more on the blogs I stalk.

        Good luck with the snow!

  • Nina says:

    Lovely dress!! It's snowing here in Heidelberg, too! Just a little, unfortunately, b/c I LOVE snow :) I love snowflakes, the streets are glitzy and everything looks like in a fairytale. Sorry to interrupt your rant about snow ^^ A friend of mine flew to Edinburgh this morning, I told her about your 17 hr episode and told her good luck. Do you know how things currently are on Edinburgh Airport?

    Best wishes :)
    .-= Nina´s last blog ..I wish I was someone better =-.

  • Laura says:

    I couldn't agree more. Today was the first day my boyfriend and I dared venture into the city centre (we left shortly after arriving) and he was subjected to a half hour long rant about how much I hate snow and how the country is so unprepared for it and how it is obviously the council's fault. Even though it's the worst snow we've had, maybe, ever?!*

    * Probably not true but it seems that way!

  • Ursula says:

    I'm amazed your council doesn't clear the roads. I guess Germans are more used to snow after all. On the other hand supermarkets over here don't do home deliveries yet, so if I did get snowed in, I would starve! I love the dress – it encourages me to give Primark another chance. They have just entered the German market and I went there recently – but I didn't really see anything I liked.
    .-= Ursula´s last blog ..Der Vampir-Wahn =-.

    • Amber says:

      They do clear the main roads, but they treat the side streets (where everyone lives!) as the last priority, which means that this year the majority of them haven't been cleared at all, as the council are too busy clearing the main routes. It's a chicken and egg situation, basically, because while no one would argue with the need to keep the main routes clear, at the moment no one can actually get to them because we can't get out of our streets! You're right, though, we just aren't used to this kind of snowfall AT ALL, so we're totally unprepared for it. To make matters worse, most people don't really know how to drive in snowy/icy conditions, so there are a lot of accidents and abandoned vehicles.

      As for Primark, it's hit and miss. Sometimes I won't see anything I like for months, other times you can stumble across a hidden gem!

  • Eyeliah says:

    Yes, I have heard about all the snow, how awful. That dress is really lovely and I hope your weather starts to clear up.
    .-= Eyeliah´s last blog ..Your Heart Is Gonna See You Through =-.

  • Anna says:

    I'll have to show this to my friend. For some reason, she believes that there is no snow in the UK…

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