Wind from the north.

We had a pleasant lull recently, when most days were accompanied by bright sunshine, even though it was cold. It was January after all, so to be expected. Then the wind changed.
Norfolk sticks out into the North Sea, so when the winds come from due north, they are on their way from Norway and Sweden, so you can imagine what that brings. It brought snow, which was nice to look at, and fortunately didn’t hang around for too long. Then came the colder mornings, and frosty nights. The freezing rain that followed wasn’t too pleasant, I could have done without that.

Yesterday, it began to snow quite heavily in the morning; like white cornflakes, tumbling rapidly from the sky. It was heavy enough to obscure the view across the road, and I felt certain that we were in for a good covering. By the time it came to take Ollie for his walk, I considered it necessary to prepare for the conditions. I found my Russian hat, long stored in a wardrobe, and got out my warm-lined trousers, still not worn, reserved for the snow and ice. The larger scarf, longer parka, and gloves of course. By the time I had squeezed myself into this getup, the snow had been replaced by heavy rain. It was drumming on the rooftops, and when I stepped out, I could feel it was icy cold rain too.

I changed hats. No point getting all the fur wet on the Russian one, so it was swapped for the waterproof cap that I really hate. I eventually trudged off into the downpour with Ollie, and as usual, he took no notice whatsoever. The ground over the Meadows was like a quagmire. Melted snow, driving rain, all on ground that was hard underneath, made for a sticky and slippery mess. At times I had trouble keeping on my feet, as I watched Ollie bounding off toward the river, oblivious. After a couple of miserable circuits, I decided to head off to Hoe Rough. There were no other dogs out for Ollie to play with, so a longer walk would be required.

It wasn’t much better over there. Lots of water still standing on the ground, and thick mud on the paths near the river. I did my duty by Ollie, and continued to wander around in the driving rain, trying to feel happy for him, and for being out in the fresh air. It wasn’t working though. I just felt miserable and wet, with the rain so hard it was getting through my coat, and beginning to make me feel damp and tired. After being out for over ninety minutes, I turned for home. Ollie’s fur was soaked, and the only other person we had seen brave enough to venture out had been across the other side of the river, so we couldn’t accompany them. We had to settle for shouted greetings across the water, both complaining about the weather of course.

Once home and dry, I prepared the wood-burner for a nice fire. Not that it was cold inside, as the heating was on. It is just nice to have that flame, and feel the direct warmth. After all the problems with that burner, covered in detail on previous posts, it finally seems to be working properly, with no issues. (Yes, my fingers are crossed!) Once it was glowing magnificently, and throwing out a delicious heat, we settled in for the evening, with a nice meal, some TV shows, and lots of basking in the glow.

No need to go out again anywhere that night, fortunately.

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15 thoughts on “Wind from the north.

  1. One coat fits all here, warm and waterproof with a removable quilted liner for the warmer days, not to mention a zip 🙂
    Even though our three dogs are free to roam and come and go as they please, they still insist on two walks a day, first and last light, staring at me through the widows or barking disapproval if I fail to deliver. Although I have to admit I rarely stretch beyond an hours walk at this time of year.
    Stay warm Pete, more snow to come!

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    1. I expect that it is a lot colder in the Eastern Bloc Eddy, but it’s cold enough for me here. Dogs. Even though they roam all day, they still need that ritual. It’s the hunt mate, and you are the pack leader, showing them where to find the game. Instinct never leaves them, no matter how domesticated.
      Best wishes to you all over there. Pete.

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      1. I wouldn’t have it any other way, as I have mentioned before the true pleasure in having a dog is watching them enjoy themselves.
        We went on a fox hunt yesterday, following the footprints in the snow, we didn’t find it, but oh what fun as they found the scent 🙂

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  2. Ollie must be in 7th heaven despite the cold and the rain. I could imagine the mud. Living in a tropical country, it must be nice some time to see snow as it falls gently to the ground.

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    1. Snow is lovely to look at Arlene. When it has settled, and nobody has yet walked on it, the trees all white, and everything looking clean, it is magical. But then you have to try to drive in it, or walk on the ice underneath. Then the fun stops.
      Best wishes as always, Pete.

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  3. Pete, I have a coat and a couple of jackets in the closet that are meant for cold weather, but rarely do they ever see the light of day. Today, the afternoon temperatures reached 63 F (17.2 C), and tomorrow it will warm up to 69 F (20.5). I went on my 2-1/3 mile walking loop today, wearing only a short sleeve shirt, and still worked up a sweat. We’ve had some cloud cover off and on, but it doesn’t appear to affect the temperature much. We’ve received 0.86 inches (2.18 cm) of precipitation so far in 2015, which explains why Noah’s descendants are out of work here.

    I am always very interested in reading about your winter weather in Norfolk. It’s so alien to what we experience this time of year in the Desert Southwest. Of course, we will pay the piper this summer, when temperatures will be so incredibly hot that we’ll feel like the sun is branding our hide like cattle.

    Does Ollie really need 90 minutes of exercise every day? On days of inclement weather, couldn’t you cut it short, and lengthen the time on days where nature cooperates?

    If only we could winter in Vegas, and summer in Beetley!

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    1. Despite my blog-moans, I really wouldn’t like the very hot summers you have in Nevada, but the mild January would be most acceptable.
      Ollie should really have two hours out and about, otherwise he is unlikely to be tired enough to settle later. So, it is a shorter walk than usual, and he gets three hours (sometimes longer) in better weather.
      It sounds as if you need to put those coats on Ebay David!
      Best wishes, Pete.

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  4. One of the inconvenient things about winter is what to wear — depending on the weather at the moment — and all the choices of clothing. I have a pile of clothing from which to choose for sunny & cold, sunny and not so cold, cold and miserable, cold and snow, etc etc. You sound like a New Englander!

    I’m imagining that Ollie appreciated the outing a great deal; our pets seem better equipped to enjoy themselves in all kinds of weather and love the exercise and diversion.

    I’m glad your heater was working and that you and Ollie got to bask in the glow for a job well done and hard earned.

    It’s sunny and cold in New England at the moment. The sun will be brief as we’re expecting a great deal more snow tonight and tomorrow. Today I’m dressing for sunny and cold but tomorrow it’s back to as much warm clothing as I can possible wear and still move to be dressed for snowy and miserable. .

    As of tomorrow, only 6 more weeks of winter!

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    1. Good news about the six weeks Gretchen.
      I tend to wear layers, so that I just remove some for warmer days. I am looking forward to walking Ollie wearing my shorts again though, as I feel too bundled-up in all these waterproofs and heavy coats.
      Hope things get better for you soon. Best wishes, Pete.

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  5. Pete, it amazes me how our beloved pets don’t feel set back from the weather conditions. They almost grin up at us, while we’re outdoors with them, freezing our bottoms off.

    My little pup hurt her shoulder chasing after a squirrel last Sunday, so I slept on the hide a bed in my living room for 6 nights. 13 stairs to my bedroom would have not helped her and since she sleeps where I do we settled down on the main floor.

    I know why they call it a hide a bed, because no one in their right mind wants to sleep on a metal frame with a mattress pretending to be comfortable… Stay warm and dry across the pond my friend…

    Take care and happy blogging to ya, from Laura ~

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    1. Ollie chased a fox today. It was about 200 yards away, trying to dig out a rabbit hole. Ollie had never seen a fox before. Although we live in the country, they are rarely seen here, except dead on the road. Still, Ollie instinctively wanted to chase it, and not in a friendly way!
      We have just got back, both soaked, from freezing rain and a heavy snowfall, that didn’t settle.
      Roast Lamb tonight, and no going out.
      Best wishes, Pete.

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      1. Pete, oh my sounds like a ruff day to be outdoors over there, but staying in, while a the roast lamb is cooking sounds like the perfect plan for your Sunday..
        Take care, from Laura ~

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