The new “Terror Weather” is upon us & I blame everyone #narrowboat #england

Are we all scared enough, or do you need another “Red Warning”?

Yes, it’s winter. Yes, it’s cold. Yes, it can be disruptive. But… if I see just one more “news” service showing a lightly dusted field or road and describing it as “blanketed”… if I read just one more weather report screaming that temperatures will plunge overnight…

…well, I’ll go to the foot of our stairs. Is there to be nothing that we’re not terrified of? It’s weather, just weather, so make preparations, change your plans, bung on some decent boots and forget fashion and wear a waterproof coat over warm layers. Rocket science it is not.

FFFFF

Now that I’ve disparaged the mettle of the vast majority of my countrymen I can virtually guarantee you that I will be found in late March, frozen solid in nought but my slippers and boxer shorts. Sod’s Law is universal.

Seriously though, good gravy, folks, get a grip.

The Cardinal was moved to more weather-resilient moorings a few days ago, I wanted to stay where I had been, but here I am within walking – trudging – distance of services and shops. Mr Wolsey is backside-on to the wind, and the planet is tied to him with my customary four ropes. I’ve done what I can, I’m going nowhere fast and we shall see what we shall see. The canal has frozen over, but so has the previously muddy towpath… so it’s a damned sight easier and cleaner to walk around the area for the moment!

That’s the Cardinal, moored right down at the end, by the bridge.

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The ice on the canal is being ever so gently covered in snow. The view from the bow in the opposite direction is every bit as picturesque.

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Sometimes I lose the view, when it snows hard enough to blot out the distance.

Even with today’s snowfall, it’s not (yet) “snowmageddon” here. There’s time yet though.

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Some of the boats down (up?) by the services through this bridge are occupied, the others… well, I hope that they have been prepared for winter by their loved ones.

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The mobile internet – I was about to say “went” down yesterday, but I suspect “was taken” down is more appropriate. I wasted decades working for big corporations and, call me cynical if you will, but do you remember all of those dire warnings slipped into the “news” about how mobile networks may be disrupted or cease to function during the “terror weather”? I suspect that what will have happened is that the services were taken down for planned work, upgrades, maintenance and wotnot – all disguised as a problem caused by the weather, and thus not official “down time” logged against their service records…

The mobile mast hereabouts is no more than three-hundred metres away from the boat, and in a direct line of sight. I could hit it with electrons fired from a rubber-band.

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There is one feature of note on this little stretch of canal (aside from myself, of course!) and it’s more easily visible in the winter season when some of the undergrowth, overgrowth and general growth dies back a little.

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These fascinating, slightly spooky old ruins are, apparently, an old brick works.

I had hoped for “the lair of vampire hobbits” but, no, tis a brick works of long dereliction. There’s about a foot of soil and veggie matter built up on top of the very, very substantial brick walls, some very mature trees have had time to encroach and all traces of access paths and roads have disappeared. I am guessing therefore that the place was abandoned quite some weeks ago.

It’s not a structure that I would fancy mooring up next to overnight!

I couldn’t tell whether the four portals visible were circular or just arched and then partly filled-in by Mr Nature.

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Perhaps, given the location, it dates from the era when such as bricks were moved by canal boat. Fancy that, eh? Local industry, not owned by some vast foreign corporation.

Talking of which, does anyone know how Maplin, Toys “R” Us and Carillion are doing at the moment? Dead, you say? Dead? Sucked of life and the pension funds drained? Well, you could knock me down with a feather, who would have thought that faceless, disinterested, global corporations were not such a sustainable, benevolent and benign paradigm after all. If only there were some other model of industry that we might draw upon for inspiration… something that we had to actively, politically destroy, rather than something that just upped and died of its own accord, like all of the modern shi*te…

Right, I must away and make preparations to be found again when the “terror weather” is withdrawn by the government, perhaps found with a little cloakroom label tied to my big toe and reading “Cynic” and “Smug little sod” and “got what he deserved for not joining in with everything”.

Wonder when the fuel boat will be around again?

OMG! Is that a polar bear in the distance?

It is! It is!

PANIC! Kill the children – it will be the kindest thing!

TERROR WEATHER! Aaaaargghhh!

😉

18 Comments

  1. “Mr. Nature”!!! Have never, never seen that before! LOLLLLLLLLLLLL

    Wow, it’s a wonder that the “Politically Correct Police” haven’t paid you a visit.

    But then, they might well be curtailed from their rounds, by “The Horrible Snow & Ice”.

    Might want to be prepared for them, come the Thaw though. Can’t see letting a slight, like “Mr. Nature”, prevail on the Net. Brrrrrr….. Shiver…… Moan….. Gasp……. Whimper…. Sighhhhhhhhhh…

    >,-)))))))))))

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    1. 🙂 If there is one thing that I am emphatically not, it is “politically correct”! Father Nature, Mother TIme, Mrs The-Devil – even my boat is a “he” much to the bewilderment of most boaters! If the world wants to go to Hell in a handcart and to throw away all conventions then it ought to know that I’ll choose my own from now on in! Glad you like the blog – the weather is seriously beginning to bite now. Was due a visit from the fuel boat but they have been delayed by the ice on the canal and won’t be here now until sometime tomorrow morning. This bleak spell just seems to go on and on… and on… and on…

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  2. That brickworks looks like it needs a good story written about it. Obviously kids would got into those holes and get lost or dragons would be found or other parallel universes entered. Neil Gaiman’s Neverworld is inside those holes and no one will convince me otherwise.

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    1. Dragons and hobgoblins it has to be. If it were possible to moor opposite or next to that ruin I’d be awake all night, plotting – and listening for the pitter-patter of little hooves on the Cardinal’s deckplates! Mind you, with my track record, if I poked my nose in for a look it would turn out to be the entrance to a two-mile deep mine, with a crumbling step… 🙂

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  3. I know it’s different in the UK and that you don’t get a lot of snow but for heavens sake – most Canadians wouldn’t even bother digging out their boots for that little bit of snow! 🙂
    I know the temperatures are supposed to be much colder than normal so I hope the canal icing over doesn’t cause you any issues but it does sound as though you are well prepared. Take care.

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    1. You’re not wrong, our only excuse is that we never get anything for more than a couple of hours – it rains it freezes then it snows then it partly-thaws, then it snows again and then re-freezes! In the afternoon we have something different, or the same weather again but backwards this time. That’s why we can’t use snow-tyres or chains, by the time we got halfway to anywhere the roads would be clean and dry. I don’t mind folk panicking, we all like a good fuss, but the country’s infrastructure really ought not to grind to a halt at the second snowflake, it’s embarrassing.

      That said, the news is full of people “freezing” on the way to work – and the photo shows them dressed in heels and fashion-jackets and short short skirts (and the women are even less well-dressed)! We really have very little idea… unless you live or have lived in the real countryside, or in the Outer Hebrides and places like that, where either you cope or you don’t have to worry about the next winter at all. 🙂

      Hope you’re warm and snug, and many thanks for envisitating! 🙂

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    1. They didn’t close schools for snow in my day, our parents just sent us out that much earlier to get there on time! Not often that we got a lift, either, it was all walkies or the bus. The boat is warm inside, but this cold is some sort of damp, get-everywhere, bone-chill cold, so I am exploring my collection of indoor hats, fingerless gloves and furry waistcoats! I may even take up smoking a pipe – a Calabash, a la Sherlock Holmes – just so that I can warm my fingertips around it! 😉

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      1. I got a lift to school in ’63… I remember my mother wading through the snow carrying me. 😉
        Your sartorial choices remind me of getting ready for bed in a stone house in Yorkshire in the days before central heating. The cold, even in the flat, seems inescapable at the moment. Just wish I could find my hot water bottle…

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  4. If the canals get frozen enough you could get ice skates to make your non-boat travel time faster. Think of the pictures you could get. Did the temps drop so fast to freeze any ducks butts in the ice before they fly free? Hugs

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    1. Today’s ducks were all wandering about on the ice and looking most despondent indeed, not happy little bunnies at all. Tonight we have been promised a -13C (what’s that, about 8 or 9F) wind-chill, so there probably will be a few frozen ducks tomorrow. I do wonder where they all go and what they do. How do squirrels and sparrows and wotnot actually keep warm enough? Somehow though, they do, mostly.

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  5. Lor! You’ve had a lot of weather that should keep any stray humans in their lairs and their dogs fouling up their neat little gardens with frozen turds! Eek, I’m beginning to sound like that chap, what’s ‘is name wot writes cynical scifi books. Love the bridge photo, you have a way of making the world look beautiful, you and that Mr Nature chap!

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    1. I suspect that I am about to be shown some real weather here overnight… just to wipe the “in my day” smugness off my face! It will serve me a-right, no doubt. The temperature _has_ dropped significantly, mucho da gusto da windypops and a couple of inches more of the white stuff… With yonder photos I have been adding in a bit of extra colour and texture, so that not everything looks flat and grey to match the time of year! 🙂

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  6. I remember the Winter of February ‘63, Carruthers – whole towns were cut orf and a 13 year old version of myself had to go big game hunting, alone, with only a double barrel and six cartridges between me and the vicious were-rabbits & even bigger were-hares – but, by jingo, I prevailed and had three of the beggars before they got me.
    The family ate well for a time.
    Some days later, I was sent out again with the remaining three cartridges to get more – but, no more dared to show their furry faces, so back to the porridge we went.
    Ah, those were the days…

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    1. Aye, but you tell the youth of today that and they won’t believe you… It is getting a bit seriously “The Day After Tomorrow” around here now that dusk is upon us – more snow, more wind and ice on the outside of the windows! I can see me feeding the stove every couple of hours tonight! 🙂

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