Wednesday, January 24, 2007

At 7 this morning my children were throwing snowballs at the windows and front door. Yes! At last, it had arrived. Just when I was wondering if we'd ever see it again. We listened hopefully to local radio for news that their school was closed, but it was running normally, so their plans for sledging had to be abandoned.

By midday, most of the snow had gone from the streets but the downs were still hanging onto it. They were transformed. I walked up past the racecourse and on bridleways through the fields, delighted that even if this is the only day of snow we have, I had the opportunity to see it all laid out, patterned by sheep, birds, dogs, footprints and mud, by the hollows that escaped it, by the patches under trees that remained green and strips of scrub that interrupted the white together with yellow gorse flowers, hawthorn berries and blue stained sheep with mottled brown faces attempting to graze.

Only the digital photos I took are proof of how this morning looked. The sea was flat, barely a wave. As if there was no way it could even compete, after the storms of last week. The sea had its time. Today the downs and the sky.