Sunday, 24 March 2013

Muddy paths and potholes...




Last year there was high pressure to the south of Britain and warm air was being drawn up to us providing some of the best days of the year especially appreciated for coming so early. This year a high sits to the north of us and Siberian cold winds lash us from the east, cold, damp and chilling us to the bone. Our old stone home is sheltered from most of the prevailing winds from the west but exposed and chilled by easterlies which are bringing bands of snowy weather too. 




Here we have not had the disruption found elsewhere but being in the freeze thaw zone means that the roads are being cracked and ripped apart at an alarming rate. I fear we have reached a tipping point where repairs to the whole system are no longer possible. Though they would cost less to repair than the collective repair bills of the motorists and the danger they are facing the government seems blind to the disaster the loss of infrastructure will cause, nobody can plan a journey with any confidence of arriving safely or on time and we are condemned to endless holdups while tiny useless hole filling is carried on during the busiest times of the day. On the edge of the village elaborate temporary traffic lights were set up on Friday to repair one hole, naturally work was then abandoned for the weekend without any real work being done. Clearly those responsible for running these operations are ardent fans of Monty Python…


My recent cold has had me exhausted with the worst coughing I can ever remember and being able to take my favourite tasty cough mixture is small compensation. A steamy sauna helped bring out some of the congestion and when the snow melted I thought a brisk walk through the farm would help shift some more. On with the waterproof gardening boots and off into the bright sunshine. There is not too much choice of walks out from the village, the price you pay for being on the banks of a river… First I headed out along the old railway which has been surfaced as a cycle track, sadly those responsible had never heard of the concept of drainage and nature had ripped out a section of their work. An old Victorian scenic walk makes a serpentine way up the hill from the railway, it is still surviving despite nearly a century of neglect, the army of gardeners from the big estates vanished into the trenches of the first world war and that life was gone forever.



Thank goodness for the boots to negotiate the muddy tracks, the bitter winds sometimes vanished in the shelter of the trees only to return as I exited the farm on the south side of the hill to take the road home. What a difference between the north side where I live and the sunny south side, our stark dead undergrowth shows a few shoots testing the air whilst on the south the snowdrops and daffodils are up and in flower, trees are showing leaf buds on the point of bursting.


I guess that spring is not far away though the official first day of spring here was white with snow and the howling winds blew out the boiler so the few rooms which we heat were chilled right down. This has not happened for over a decade and my memory went blank wondering how to break into the metal box to relight it. All my memories were of the older one which used to break down all the time, this one had flush fitted panels, internet good for somethings...

.

2 comments:

  1. The Internet is good for many things Caroline but it doesn't get you out and about on your lovely, despite the weather, walks. What a pity you chose to live on the north side then, you could be looking at all those snowdrops and daffodils from your window. The weather has been extraordinary hasn't it? Many will blame that on global warming and they may be right, part of that problem is the burning of fossil fuels though isn't it....the same ones heating your house by that new boiler you have. Maybe it would be better if we all turned the clock back and collected wood to burn on our walks in the country......LOL

    Shirley Anne x

    ReplyDelete
  2. Shirley Anne, the farmer cuts down trees and leaves them to rot, dozens od homes could be heated for free...

    If I am the last one standing in this relationship the gas company will get a shock when I cut the heating to a level which just stops the water pipes freezing. At least I can take comfort knowing that I have not contributed to an increase in the population of greedy consumers...

    I was lucky enough to find someone to take me in to their crumbling victorian ruin facing north, at least the basthroom gets some sun...

    ReplyDelete

Many thanks to all who ever joined in the conversation and to those who took the time to follow my zig zag to a new life..

I can be contacted on the email found on my profile page.