Saturday, 10 January 2009

The sheer joy of winter

I went for a walk this afternoon. On my own. I was thrilled when everyone else said they'd prefer to lie on the sofa under a blanket and watch TV. So I headed out into the winter wonderland that is England at the moment.

I walked in a cloud of fog that muffled all sound. Every branch, leaf, blade of grass had been encrusted with layers of jewel-like ice. Their shapes were amplified with white borders - holly leaves fiercely pointy, a weeping willow's bendy branches elongated with icicles making it look even more folorn, fir trees with branches turned to feather dusters. Puddles were mini ice rinks. Spiderwebs frozen masterpieces.

Huddled under a stark white oak tree, cold grey gravestones that long ago forgot who they were for, leant teeteringly in the churchyard, looking as though they'd quite like a lie down but silently, stoicly held their positions. I walked on.

Crunching over a rock hard field, I crested a hill and would have had a magnificent few, had I not been engulfed in a cloud of freezing fog. But a view of complete white is still magnificent. The wind tore at my face, turning my sinus passages into frozen canals - an ice cream headache followed. My ears ached. My chin burned. My eyes watered. A balaclava would have been good. But embracing the elements was even better.

There wasn't another soul about. No animals. The odd nervous bird would pop out of frosty undergrowth protected from the brunt of the wind - and would pop back in again. It was just me. The frost. The wind. And the fog.

It. Was. Marvellous.

9 comments:

Tara@Sticky Fingers said...

I'm totally with you there HOM.
The family all went walking in the forest by our home and because it was so cold and icy there was hardly anyone around and it was all frosted over and looked like a winter wonderland.
My 3 year old daugher said all in awe "it's like Narnia!" and it made it feel just that little bit more magical.

Home Office Mum said...

It was really magic Tara and today it was all gone. Sniff. So pleased I ventured out yesterday before it all disappeared.

More than a Mother said...

What a beautiful descriptive post. I've not ventured outside in days (I only have one pair of boots, and I seem to have misplaced the left one) so thank you for sharing the view with me :)

Ali said...

Sounds simply magical HOM. You make me miss winter in the UK and that's no mean feat!

Leilani Lee said...

What a beautifully written post. I am glad you did not have photographs to dilute the beauty of the words you used. Bravo

Home Office Mum said...

Thanks for your kind comments More than a Mother, Ali and Lelani Lee. Today we have horizontal rain so very glad I got to experience it when I did!

Iota said...

That sounds wonderful.

I'm sorry you only have 10 mins adult company a day, so yes, let me assure you there is a world outside your mocha walls - but you discovered it for yourself today, didn't you? Loved the description.

Part Mummy Part Me said...

That's so evocative. Thank you for reminding me of the positives to this freezing weather!

I think I'll get my wellies and tramp off into the fields now...

Dad said...

Brilliant piece of writing!

As a descriptive piece that is up there with the best of them - it brings back a perfect image of the old church I last saw in a westerley gale!

Well done Princess Lulubelle!