Tuesday, 30 November 2010

City Snow

The snow has now arrived in my area of North London so I am contemplating the usual disruption to transport, skidding cars, school closures and usual panic that seizes this city when a touch of real winter arrives. We don't cope well with snow possibly because we don't have enough experience of this type of weather conditions. I love snow in the right places, The Alps, Aspen, Norway - whatever - but ice, slush and lack of four wheel drive vehicles and tyre chains mean the cold "snap" [strange name that Weather People give to these conditions] will be hell unless you can take time off work and build snowmen.

Another strange aspect of these weather conditions is the way it brings the siege mentality of the populace to the fore. Supermarket shelves are emptied of essentials, bread, milk, eggs etc. etc. and even more than usual the Brits are discussing the weather. The one plus is that neighbours actually start talking to one another as opposed to just nodding and "keeping themselves to themselves" and help dig each other's cars out of the snow and ask elderly neighbours if they need any shopping. This is so nice to see - why can't it last? I am probably considered a "nutter" when I talk to strangers on the tube or, and this is considered very risky, actually make eye contact and smile.

Writing about winter conditions has made me drift into thoughts of my escape to Spain just before Christmas, although it did snow for one day last year [and the locals couldn't stop talking about it] it was only for one day and disappeared as quickly as it had arrived. I need suggestions for books to take with me, I have just finished the Millennium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson [The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl who played with Fire and The Girl who kicked the Hornet's Nest]. If you haven't read them yet, don't be put off by the hype the books really are that good. However, now I need some equally good reads for my holiday reading - I read very quickly and will take as many books as I can fit into my baggage allowance. Please send recommendations.


  1. Brrrr! Masia Mum. It's cold here in England, isn't it?! Snow hasn't arrived in our part of Devon yet, and I really hope it doesn't come this week, because on Friday, we're due to fly out to visit our daughter and family in Paris. The snow looks very pretty, but, as you say, it's not funny if you have to try to get about in it. As for books, have you read The Kite Runner, or A Thousand Splendid Suns? I enjoyed those. Two recent reads of mine - The Glass Painters Daughter, and The Dream House , both by Rachel Hore. Ideal for that 'holiday' read. I'm always a bit wary of suggesting books, because we might not always have the same tastes!

  2. Maybe a Kindle in your Christmas stocking will be just the thing to solve having to carry many books in your luggage in future!

  3. Thanks Thisisme for the suggestions, I have read both The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns which I thought were excellent. We may well have similar tastes so I will dive into my nearest bookshop and look for the two Rachel Hore books you mentioned. Have a great time in Paris [one of my favourite cities, I spent an extremely cold long weekend in Paris a few years ago, apparently it was the coldest December for 30 years! I recommend a visit to Notre Dame in the weather is as cold as here, never mind the stained glass windows just stand on the open grills in the stone floor [they have underfloor heating] and defrost your toes.

    Jinksy - I know this would be more sensible but I simply love the feel of a new "virgin" book it is, for me, part of the reading pleasure.

  4. Well Masia, I read very slowly--still reading same book from 8 years agao--"the Fall of Berlin" which is huge.

    Yes,so true about neighbours in snow--exp. London. I remember that well and the stuff off the shelves. how would they mange in Colorado? hhaha, probably like i did. I love snow now.

  5. I love snow and am SO looking forward to our first big snowfall here in the mountains.

    Looking forward to seeing you at Mr. Toast's Tea party on Sunday. Have you picked out your dress yet and who will your guest be?!?! :) hee