Saturday, 2 February 2019

A Whiter Shade of Pale

A mostly grey January has moved on to a white February. We had snowfall literally all day yesterday. That really doesn't happen often in West Berkshire, so it was very exciting. We had more than 16cm of snow by the end of the day.
I didn't want to risk the 25 mile journey to work (lucky I didn't as the roads became the usual mess) so I worked from home, keeping a close eye out the window with much repetition of the phrase "It's still snowing!".
Finally I'd worked enough hours so Jamie and I went for a walk through the Winter Wonderland...
..to the allotment, obviously. Crossing the slippery bridge over the part-frozen canal. All the ducks were hiding somewhere.
Passing by the Corn Exchange with the clock looking a bit special with its covering of snow
and along snow-filled roads to the allotment site.
We had to clear snow so that we could open the allotment gates and when we got to our plot we had to knock lots of snow off our polytunnel and netted cages.
Our plots look tidier with a blanket of snow on them!
Luckily there wasn't much damage but the squashes in the greenhouse are looking less edible than they did last week - I think they've finally succumbed to the cold.
And our poor broad beans ☹️ We knew they'd grown too much over the thus far mild Winter and we thought they'd get frost damage, but this was a bit extreme. At least half of the plants were squashed flat under that heavy weight of snow. There's a slim chance that they may re-grow - we'll see...
Look at all these goldfinches! They were flying around the allotment all the while - shame they didn't turn out for the Big Garden Birdwatch last weekend. And, do you know what a flock of goldfinches is called? A charm! Isn't that pretty? There were probably about 30 birds and one kestrel keeping close watch.
We didn't sit down....(!) but it was nice to trudge through the crunchy snow and release a pheasant that was stuck in someone's brassica cage...
With frozen fingers we walked home past other frozen people and children with very rosy cheeks pulling sledges. Such a lot of fun - if you don't need to travel.
And I wanted to share my photo, from January 31st at 7:30am. That's Venus on the left of the moon and Jupiter on the right - they were so bright (much brighter than this photo shows) in the clear morning sky, quite beautiful.
And the song title - Procol Harum of course, aah sing-a-long everyone :-)

16 comments:

  1. What a charming and evocative post! Musical alternatives Aquarius (you know "When the moon is in the seventh house and Jupiter aligns with Mars" Now if only that had been Venus) or how about Venus - Shocking Blue? OK just skip the light fandango if you must.

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    1. Thanks Mal. Yes I certainly considered Venus and a lot of snow titles, but I didn't want to revisit Christmas! Anyway, this song...aaah - hippies hanging out in groovy shirts, nice 🙂

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  2. I was lucky like you to be able to work from home on Friday. I haven't been out since, still snow - but not as bad as it was a few days ago. Yes its a bit of a wonderland in places. I think it was on Thursday morning around 6.30am leaving the house for work I saw a very similar sight in relation to the moon, venus and Jupiter but didn't get a photograph. Thanks for sharing, it was a marvel indeed. We have a load of goldfinches visiting the garden bird feeders, they have been for a month now - didn't know they were known as a charm!

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    1. I have a horrible cold now - glad that came on after I could enjoy the snow!
      I have seen photos of multiple goldfinches before so I'm pleased that we have such great numbers at Marsh Lane this year

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  3. Those snowy landscapes look great. I'm sure you had fun walking through them.

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    1. It was a welcome distraction during these dullest of months!

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  4. Lovely. Great photo of the goldfinches!
    Hopefully your beans may get up again.

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    1. Thanks! Fingers crossed for the beans. We planted over-winter as last year's late crop was dessimated by blackfly, so I hope we recover something!

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  5. No snow at all here yet unless you count an icing sugar dusting one day. It must have been difficult to find paths to walk on at the allotment.

    Yes flocks of birds after the count is fairly typical.

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  6. Lovely post and pictures. You had a lot more snow than we did. xx

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    1. Thankyou, yes we were certainly in the 'red zone' for a couple of days!

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  7. Winter is the best of season. I low snow!

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    1. I love snow too, but still looking forward to Spring and Summer!

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  8. That's the real winter with snow. It must be so cold

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    1. Yes it was - especially with soaked gloves. Brrr

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Belinda