Snow, What Snow?

Well the media is telling us that the country is shivering under a blanket of snow and the country is at a standstill. Apparently, the whole Eastern side of the UK is paralysed by snow.

I’ve been checking on Google maps and Seven Kings is in Essex, which is on the eastern side of the UK. So obviously we are suffering with the snow here right? Well, that is not exactly how I would describe it. In fact if I look out of the front door, there is approximately 1mm of snow in places.

I wish the media would get things in perspective. It snows in winter- get used to it. When it snows, it causes roads to be blocked or more dangerous. It happens every year.

Similarly, the council are not going to be able to empty your bins this week if the roads are blocked or dangerous. Get over it. There are worse things than missing or late rubbish collections for a week.

As for trains getting delayed or cancelled in the South East during the snow, but not in the North of England. This happens every year. There is actually a reson- other than calling the trains soft southern engines. It is because when they electrified the railways to the South of London, they chose to use a 3rd rail rather than overhead power lines. The third rail freezes over preventing the trains from picking up the electric current and hence they stop working. Why South London Trains Stop in the Cold

Who ever decided the 3rd rail system was the way to electrify the lines seems to have got it badly wrong for our climate.

To be fair, on Tuesday morning there was a very light covering of snow here. I took the decision not to cycle to work, mainly because I was worried the roads would freeze before I got home. I did not fancy cycling in icy conditions. By the time I walked to the end of my street and onto the main road, there was no snow! Even at home time from work, there was nothing more than a very light sleet and most definitely not icy roads.

Wednesday brought a frozen street and definitely to icy to ride down, so I went to work again by public transport. Once again, the main road was clear, but it was much colder today and it was icy on my way home. I am happy I made the right choice today in not cycling to work. Still not much more than a light dusting of snow though.

I was due to be providing a training session to CPS managers tomorrow in London, but that has been cancelled as too many people indicated they thought they would have problems getting to the training centre. It may be that I’ve been lucky in Seven Kings, as I know our York office was closed today owing to weather issues. I understand those who made it into the office and were sent home had to wait for the roads to be cleared again before setting off home.

I know from speaking with Michelle in Horsley near Newcastle, that things are very different there. The school she works at has been closed on Monday,  Wednesday and is likely to be closed the rest of the week. There is a couple of feet of snow or more there. The village she lives in is pretty much cut off. Rather surprisingly her dogs who hate going out in the wind and rain love the snow and can’t go out often enough! Given they are Jack Russell dogs, I would expect them to be unhappy in the snow- but then again I am not a dog. Now, I know that will come as a surprise to some of you.

Ruby on The Garden Bench

Michelle’s dog Ruby on the Garden Bench in Horsley

Lion & Lamb Pub in Horsley

The Lion & Lamb Pub in Horsley

Well we are into December now, and I still have not got any Christmas cards written, nor any presents bought. Most people get a Christmas Card list that grows longer each year- not me. I seem to send less cards each year. I start with a long list of people I intend to send cards to, then pare it down. Am I wrong not to send cards to those I see in person and can send my greetings in person? I think I’ll buy a couple of goats for an African village and tell people I’ve done that instead of buying them a present.  I think most people would prefer to have the goat to put in a curry or a stew. Mmmmmm goat curry – rather nice. I’ve not had it for a long time though. When I was a student living in Moss side in Manchester this was a regular takeaway on the way home from the pub.

Thursday is the day that FIFA decide who gets to hold the football world cup in 2018 and 2022. England are bidding to host the 2018 tournament. However, the controversy over the BBC Panorama programme this week alleging that FIFA voting members were as corrupt as the IOC members used to be, will not have helped England’s causes. BBC Panorama Fall Out

I have to say that in my view people’s reason seems to have gone out of the window. Too many people are accusing the BBC of scuppering England’s bid or of being unpatriotic. Those people would do better to ask why we are bending over backwards to curry favour with a corrupt organisation. I’d rather us not win the right to stage the tournament than to win the right corruptly. There can be no justification for corrupt practices and I’d rather we did not lower ourselves to the level of corruption.

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