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Frozen Britain

This may be my last rant for a while. 

I’m going outside shortly and, in the immortal words
of Captain Oates, I may be some time.  For
the papers this morning tell me that more severe winter weather is on the way, with
headlines as bleak as the forecast.  If
you live in Britain
you’re familiar with the form. 

“Frozen Britain Braces For Another Arctic

“More Travel Chaos Predicted.”

These scary front-page banners usually precede sentences
such as these.  “More snow and icy
weather was predicted by forecasters today as a new cold front swept down to Britain from the Arctic
Circle.  Scotland and
northern counties were expected to bear the brunt of the storm, but motorists
in eastern and southern parts of the country have also been warned to expect
dangerous driving conditions.  Rail and
bus companies have asked customers to restrict their journeys to those that are
absolutely necessary.”

Well, I’m duly braced, but for what, exactly?

Up to one-and-half-inches of snow, that’s what.

We’ve already had at least that much this week.  On Monday I had to spend ten grueling minutes
shovelling a path to my front door.  It
wasn’t easy.  By the time I’d reached the
gate it had melted away, except where I’d created little piles of the stuff on
either side.  Some of them are still
visible three days later.    

This terrible blizzard left a trail of frozen havoc in
its wake.  Half the flights leaving
Heathrow were cancelled, incoming flights were diverted.  The AA reported its busiest day of the

So, if you don’t hear from me for a few days, it may
be because I’ve been forced to book a room in some isolated motel, or finished
up in a distant hospital to be treated for frost bite and exposure .

Wish me luck.


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