While friends in Australia have been sweltering in 45C heat, here in the UK we have had our first snow of the winter. It hasn’t been all that heavy compared to some countries but it has created the usual havoc.
Trains and planes have been cancelled, schools have closed and business have struggled to survive thanks to employees being stuck in traffic jams. For a country which can face several changes of weather in a single day, we seem very ill-prepared when it comes to dealing with our climate.
I have a theory that we actually prefer it this way. We Brits like nothing better than to complain about the vagaries of our weather. It’s too hot, too cold, too wet, too foggy – you’re never stuck for something to talk about when you live here!
It also presents us with a challenge and there’s nothing we enjoy more than a bit of adversity. Yesterday I popped into the village for some milk, a trip that usually takes no more than ten minutes. An hour later I arrived home after having chatted to at least a dozen neighbours who had all struggled out through the snow. We complained bitterly about the cold, the slippery conditions, the fact that the roads hadn’t been cleared – and all came home feeling so much better for it. Our weather presents us with some wonderful social occasions.
The other lovely thing about the recent snow is watching my 2 year-old grandson’s delight when he encountered the freezing white stuff for the first time. I took him out into the garden last Friday and he had the most wonderful time, catching snowflakes on his tongue, eating handfuls of it, lying on the ground and making snow angels, and snowballing nana! I feel so lucky to be able to watch him enjoying all these new experiences.
That thought brings me on to my new book (Surprise, surprise!) The Son That Changed His Life tells the story of French doctor Benedict Legrange and his shock on discovering that he has a child. After being treated for cancer, Ben was informed that he would be unable to father a child so when Emily, his girlfriend, told him that she was pregnant with his baby, he didn’t believe her. Now he has returned to Bride’s Bay and seen Emily and little Theo he realises what a terrible mistake he has made. He is overwhelmed at the thought that he has a son. He wants nothing more than to spend his life with Emily and Theo, loving and caring for them but is it right when his cancer could come back? Surely it would be better for them if he left?
It’s a quandry for Ben to decide what he should do but what do you think? Are you the sort of person who would grab happiness with both hands? Or would you try to make a more measured decision? I’d love to hear your views!
love to you all,