In other words, the knights are drawing in again.
Sorry. It's been a long week and you really can't expect top-notch comedy from someone who has to get up before six every morning. In fact, you should consider yourselves lucky to get any comedy at all, because, due to the fast-dropping temperatures, I am numb from the collarbone down, and I stopped feeling my ears last week. They may actually have fallen off, but since I don't wear glasses and rarely look in a mirror, this remains unsubstantiated.
So. How are we all? Enjoying the dazzling brilliance that is Autumn? The chilly, longer nights punctuated by just a puff of woodsmoke; the array of colour as the trees change into their dowdy winter nightwear, the glisten of the occasional frost that bejewels the grasses in the early mornings? Yes? Then you are clearly people with efficient central heating, because for me, Autumn is the time when I don so many clothes that I am unable to bend my arms from late September through to April, wear socks so thick that I have to have my shoes specially made in a shipyard and develop an unnatural affinity for my electric blanket.
|You like this? Do you? Try imagining you're naked, standing in it....still liking it? Perv.|
Whilst I can fully appreciate the beauties of autumnal colours, I prefer to be appreciating them whilst toasty-warm, preferably from the steps of an aircraft bound for somewhere really hot, whilst sipping a glass of Pimms and wearing something floaty and appropriate only for the warmer climes for which I am bound. Like snow. You can only really appreciate snow when you don't have to slog four miles through it, up to your knees, just to get a pint of milk and a paper. Snow is a bit like a tiger. Beautiful, wild and untamed, and best seen through very thick glass, rather than at a distance of a few inches whilst fighting for your life. Or a pint of red-top and the latest edition of Top Gear magazine, which, I freely admit, is not the same as death, even if Jeremy Clarkson is being really sarcastic about something.
It's my own fault. I live in a house in which, when it is windy, all the curtains wiggle about even when the windows are closed and even the slugs grow a winter coat; it's a bit like being Victorian, only without the consumption and the aspidistra. It's lovely in the summer, very airy and cool, except that we have to be careful about leaving the doors and windows open, because the chickens get in and put beakmarks in the butter, but apart from that and the bluebottles the size of Spitfires, it's fine. Winter, however, is another matter...
So, I hear you asking, rather croakily, for my tale of chilly woe has caused tears to flood your dear little eyes, why don't you move? Pack your meagre belongings which, we are led to believe, would barely fill a donkey-cart, and head elsewhere, where the temperatures are less knuckle-bitingly low, and the water is actually liquid between October the fifth and April the twenty-seventh? Somewhere you can truly appreciate the wonders of nature as the seasons change and you roll about naked in temperatures exceeding thirty degrees centigrade behind triple-glazing?
|EXACTLY like this.|
Put it down to my being British. Sturdy, with an upper-lip so stiff that you can use it to open bottles, I owe my rugged good looks to the bracing effects of the Yorkshire winter, which have so tightened my skin that I look twenty five, and when I frown it sounds like a tarpaulin flapping in a gale. Besides, we British like to complain about the weather. It gives us something to talk about, once we've exhausted the fascinating subject of Doctor Who!
I have to stop now. The frostbite in my fingers is such that I can no longer type and the wind is getting up. I need to venture outside to chisel the washing off the line before dark, and before the sheets snap off.
I may be some time....