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Where’s the white stuff?



Christmas is coming, (in case anybody hadn’t noticed) and nearly every card I get has snow on it. What is it about that white stuff that gets us all so hopeful? In Britain we border on the delusional about snow. It’s what we all want for Christmas, but we rarely get it. We don’t have white Christmases; we have wet ones; sleety, windy, breezy, damp ones. And if the weather forecast is anything to go by, we are in for some tremendous gales today. Michael Alexander Chaney put some snow scenes from literature in his blog. I’ve got some rain ones. Get your brollies out.

The air was so heavy with water, that not till they had passed Frog’s Bridge did they hear the sweet, dull jangle of sound that told them that the ringers were practising their Christmas peal; it drifted through the streaming rain with an aching and intolerable melancholy, like the noise of the bells of a drowned city pulsing up through the overwhelming sea.

The Nine Tailors, Dorothy L Sayers.

Then came a wind and a rain, and the wind whipped the rain and hail about in every direction, so that an overhanging rock was no protection at all. Soon they were getting drenched and their ponies were standing with their heads down and their tails between their legs, and some of them were whinnying with fright. They could hear the giants guffawing and shouting all over the mountainsides.

The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien

Though the hygrometer was within 33 ½ degrees of extreme dryness, or 66 ½ from extreme humidity, thick clouds formed round us, which obliged us to think of retreating: in a little time, the summit of the mountain was surrounded by them: they spread and covered the whole horizon: a premature night surprised us in a very dangerous road, and we suffered one of the most violent tempests I ever experienced, of wind, rain, hail, and thunder.

Thoughts on Meteorology, M de Luc

My troubles began when I joined my Highland battalion in India and had to have a batman from the ranks of my own platoon. No doubt I had been spoiled in India, but the contrast was dramatic. Where I had been accustomed to waking to the soft murmur of ‘Chota hazri, sahib’, and having a pialla of perfectly-brewed tea and a sliced mango on my bedside table, there was now a crash of hobnailed boots and a raucous cry of ‘Erzi tea! Some o’ it’s spilt, and there’s nae sugar. Aye, an’ the rain’s oan again.’

The Complete McAuslan, George MacDonald Fraser,

About elainecanham

I started blogging because I'm a writer, and I thought I ought to. Now I realise that I blog because I lwant to; even when I can't think of much to say. I do a lot of work for local businesses - get in touch if you like my style.


14 thoughts on “Where’s the white stuff?

  1. I blame the Americans too, and our Currier & Ives BS. Christian or not, American or not, it’s some ideal we wrap ourselves around that time of year every year and darn right, it’s always better with snow, innit? I live in the Pacific Northwest (Seattle) and we get about no snow, which is a bit of a drag. Have to go to the mountains for it…but if we get even an inch, school’s canceled and everyone’s scared to drive to work.

    Posted by pinklightsabre | January 16, 2014, 4:45 am
  2. Here in the antipodean summer Christmas we used to (as kids) put cotton wool on the Christmas tree for snow. Now we just spray snow on the tree from a can while we go bare-footed and naked from the waist up.

    Posted by Bruce Goodman | December 18, 2013, 11:23 pm
    • Yes, but did you get snow in the other half of the year ? I’ve seen those Narnia films; they’re awash with snow. Or is that cotton wool, too?

      Posted by elainecanham | December 19, 2013, 4:34 pm
  3. I don’t know where the white stuff is, but I loved all the Father Christmases on cycles. That was hilarious

    Posted by Peter Wells aka Countingducks | December 18, 2013, 5:46 pm
  4. The joys of the British Winter and Summer alike.Maybe we have have snow for Easter again, just when we don’t want it.
    xxx Huge Hugs Elaine xxx

    Posted by davidprosser | December 18, 2013, 3:34 pm
  5. I wish I could send you the snow we’ve been getting here. Really, I do, I was out shoveling it for six hours on Saturday.

    Posted by MishaBurnett | December 18, 2013, 12:17 pm
  6. I blame the Americans! I could expand but… for everything!
    I was out shopping in the drizzle with the lights reflected off the wet pavement and I thought this is what I associate with Christmas.
    Here’s a rain poem (with video) http://bernardyoung.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/a-watery-poem-for-national-poetry-day-3-october/ 😉

    Posted by KRC | December 18, 2013, 12:02 pm
    • Hey Karen, I haven’t got the hang of marrying up comments and replies, but thanks for your link. Why do blame the Americans? Do you think they’re pinching all the snow?

      Posted by elainecanham | December 18, 2013, 12:26 pm
  7. “I’m singing!—just singing… in the rain”

    Posted by michaelalexanderchaney | December 18, 2013, 11:48 am

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