Judith, who works near a Kent reservoir and wildfowl centre, says that even the bird watchers, who are renowned for being all present and correct in every kind of weather, aren’t even bothering to turn up, because there just aren’t any birds about apparently! Don’t know where they’ve gone, she didn’t say. Personally I’d opt for somewhere like the Costa Dorada - I have a sister-in-law who lives there and she posted a picture today of her nice local beach, with the sea calm as milk, on Facebook. Grrr! Talk about rubbing salt in wounds!
Returning to the subject of birds, the pair of chirpy wood pigeons, a perky couple, who generally hang around on the oak tree at the back of our garden, sit hunched-up day after day on separate branches in the endless rain - frankly, the poor blighters look like they could do with Prozac! And they’re not the only ones feeling down in the dumps. A neighbour who works as a postman told me that he has done several deliveries recently where he has been out in non-stop torrential rain for his entire shift. He gets soaked, the mail gets soaked and the public then complain at him because their mail’s soaked. Even the odd passing dog on a lead looks like it might prefer to be at home - in front of the telly watching an old Scooby Doo episode perhaps?
I’m indulging in all manner of strange, previously unknown behaviour (for me that is!) like checking the daily weather forecast! I actually did something today that I have never done before and which I put down to the adverse effect the weather’s having on me. You see I work to a daily word quota when I’m writing a first draft and today, for the first time ever, I clocked that I’d hit my word count and literally just stopped mid-sentence. Mid sentence! I was feeling so darned apathetic that ....
Yes, I know, I’m whingeing, and I also know that there are hundreds of my fellow countrymen (women included of course) who are really suffering. There was one old feller of ninety-two on the radio news who had been cut off by floodwater and said he hadn’t seen a soul in days. Another elderly man was caring for a wife with Parkinson's disease who couldn’t be moved. There are hundreds and hundreds of people who have been without power for extended periods; people with potentially life-threatening illnesses who have to have a regular supply of medication; people who’ve been flooded out, their homes awash with contaminated water; people who have lost precious family heirlooms, or just about everything they own. It’s sickening to hear about the thieves who have been robbing the deserted properties of flood victims. But uplifting to hear the far more numerous reports of acts of generosity and kindness. Our emergency services continue to deliver help where needed day after day. They deserve our praise for their tireless efforts on our behalf.
The rain is getting on my nerves, but we live up on a hill, we’re warm, dry, and there’s nothing much to moan about really. I gave another exasperated shrug when I heard that after what had been a mostly dry day today, tomorrow there are more gales expected and more torrential rain.
But I guess it has to stop sometime. It does, doesn’t it?
The picture at the top is of Three Cliffs Bay on the Gower Peninsula, Wales. It has nothing whatever to do with this blog post. I took the photograph eighteen months back on a gloriously warm morning when I went for a walk and a swim with my son. My smiley face instantly returns when I think of it.