Tag Archives: snow

Be Prepared! Supplies for bad weather

Whilst I recognise that there are some parts of the country that are having a horrid time with the weather, here in Market Harborough we are not. 

We have had a bit of snow.  There is snow on the pavements and roads (the track outside my house is Very Slippy Indeed) but the main roads are clear.  It is winter and only to be expected.  This did not stop The Boys’ schools from chucking them out at 12.30 today however, with their end of term Carol Services cancelled.

Sainsbury’s was so unbelievably busy this morning, that I asked a checkout girl if I had made some terrible mistake and it was actually Christmas tomorrow?  She replied that people were stocking up because of the snow.

I wonder how many people have prepared for bad weather by having an Emergency Pack in the house?   A freezer full of  ready meals is of no use to you if the power has gone off.  And if it does go off, you stand more chance of saving the contents of your freezer if you don’t open it.

I would suggest the following:-
Candles – plenty of
Matches
Torch + spare batteries.  Better still, a wind-up one
Camping stove – preferably 2
Spare gas bottles for the above
Thermos flask – preferably 2
Extra blankets or sleeping bags inc. one for the car
Hot water bottles
First Aid Kit inc painkillers, cough mixture, lavender oil
A Radio + extra batteries or pref. a wind-up one
A board game or playing cards
The New National Song Book (only joking. Although…)

Tinned food – soup, baked beans, corned beef, tomatoes, potatoes, tuna, rice pudding, pasta sauce, sweetcorn, meatballs, fruit
Dried food – pasta, stock cubes, milk, sugar, instant Ovaltine or Hot chocolate, tea bags, coffee, raisins (you ought to have most of these in your storecupboard anyway)
Onions
Oil
Bottled water
Chocolate
Milk, cheese, eggs and butter can be kept outside in a lidded container if your fridge is off.  Same for fresh veg.

Keep some De-Icer in the house.  If it’s in the car it’s no use for getting the car open.  Ditto the scraper.
Know where your shovel is.  Shovelling snow will keep you warm!
If you have an open fire, get some extra coal, logs and firelighters.
Top up your mobile with a bit extra if you know bad weather is coming

Also, and this is very important, if you have elderly neighbours make sure they are ok and keep checking on them if necessary. Make sure they have your telephone numbers.

Stop whining unless  you genuinely have something to whine about.   It’s the being cheerful wot keeps us going.

Toodle Pip!

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Sunday Poem 10

This is one of my favourite poems.  I’m glad to say that I was made to learn it at school and it one of the few poems that I can pretty much quote from memory.  When I worked in London, I would often recite this to myself on hot, stuffy summer days, when the air and noise of the city was becoming unbearable.  

I am also a person who cannot go near the sea without going in; I have paddled at Cley-next-the sea in November, I have swum off Brighton in March at six o’clock in the morning  in my underwear, I have struck out  from Gigha, surrounded by seals, on a September evening without my underwear, because the sea calls to me in a way that makes me ache. 

Reading this poem again, I am struck by the power of the rhythms and aliterations and I can see it all.

The Ice Cart by Wilfrid Wilson Gibson (1878-1962)

Perched on my city office-stool
I watched with envy while a cool
And lucky carter handled ice …
And I was wandering in a trice
Far from the grey and grimy heat
Of that intolerable street
O’er sapphire berg and emerald flow
Beneath the still cold ruby glow
Of everlasting Polar night,
Bewildered by the queer half light,
Until I stumble unawares
Upon a creek where big white bears
Plunged headlong down with with flourished heels
And floundered after shining seals
Through shivering seas of blinding blue.
And, as I watched them, ere I knew
I’d stripped and I was swimming too
Among the seal-pack, young and hale,
And thrusting on with threshing tail,
With twist and twirl and sudden leap
Through crackling ice and salty deep,
Diving and doubling with my kind,
Until, at last, we left behind
Those big white, blundering bulks of death,
And lay, at length, with panting breath
Upon a far untravelled flow,
Beneath a gentle drift of snow –
Snow drifting gently, fine and white,
Out of the endless Polar night,
Falling and falling evermore
Upon that far untravelled shore,
Till I was buried fathoms deep
Beneath that cold, white drifting sleep –
Sleep drifting sleep …
The carter cracked a sudden whip:
I clutched my stool with startled grip,
Awakening to the grimy heat
Of that intolerable street.

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