Thursday, February 10, 2011
It's back again
It’s back again. Every year it turns up around the same time. I tried to ignore this year, but right now it’s peering at me through the window like a miserable grey demon reminding me that it’s in control of everyone and everything around it. I try referring it by its Latin name, Febura, named after the feast of purification but it’s no good. I know its February and I know there’s still two thirds of the month to go. I don’t like Tuesdays either, and to me February is like twenty eight Tuesdays joined together. In really bad years an extra one gets tacked on the end. If we need to have one month which grows by a day every now and again, why can’t we make it a jolly month like July?
I saw some snowdrops today. How brave they are to poke their little white heads above the ground when all sensible flowers are still tucked in their beds.
Here’s something I bet you didn’t know! The name snowdrop does not mean 'drop' of snow, it means drop as in eardrop - the old word for earring. It is also said that when Eve was in the Garden of Eden one freezing February day she was moaning to Adam about being cold and she thought the winter would never end. You can't blame her. can you imagine being out there today with nothing more than a fig leaf to keep you warm? It’s said that an angel appeared and she transformed some of the snowflakes into snowdrop flowers, thus proving that winters do eventually give way to spring. Surely the angel could have done something a little more useful like poking a hole in the clouds to let a little sunlight through. Anyway, spring seems a long way off right now.
The author Anna Quindlen was no fan of February either. In her book One True Thing she says ‘February is a suitable month for dying. Everything around is dead, the trees black and frozen so that the appearance of green shoots two months hence seems preposterous, the ground hard and cold, the snow dirty, the winter hateful, hanging on too long’. How true.
I was reading a local village newsletter today. The lead article says ‘February has an optimism all of its own. When else can you experience a burst of sunlight when least expected? What about the ice moon against the bitter sky and the long expansive vista only visible this time of year when the trees are without the clutter of leaf or bloom?’ Unbelievable!!! I don’t want just ‘bursts’ of sunlight. You can keep your ice moons and bitter skies, and as for leaves and blooms being referred as clutter.......... Grrrr! Remind me to drop the editor a line.
It’s the middle of the day right now, but outside it’s more like dusk. I can see the sea from my window. It's grey. Rising up from the distant horizon the sky is grey. Even the seagulls squawking overhead are grey today. What leaves there are, are shivering in the cold. The only bit of colour I saw whilst peering outside was the glowing red nose on a grey clad fellow who wearily trudged past.
I think I’ll close the curtains.
Picture - Winter by Syrilla at deviantART