Monday, 21 January 2013

Snowballs and Sledges

Needless to say, as soon as I mention that snow never settles in Southampton, it snows all night and all day, lays thickly and the city is brought to a standstill by the relentless blizzard!
All the schools were closed and the gleeful yelps and screams of cheerful snow covered children, ambushing each other up and down the streets, could be heard constantly throughout the morning.
By lunchtime all was all quiet on the Western front, the children were all frozen to their bones with soggy socks and frostbitten fingers. It was still snowing hard outside, as the coats and gloves dried out on the radiators and the frigid digits wrapped around cups of hot chocolate gradually thawed.
After some grub and warming of the extremities, everyone was back at it again. Epic snowball fights evolved all along the road. Boys Vs Girls, Kids Vs Adults, Family Vs Family, it didn’t seem to matter much.
Frozen Ducks Dodging Pack Ice
There were occasional tears, when someone got a facefull of snow or a soggy shot straight down the neck, but they were soon revived with a quick towelling and sent back out into the fray until the battle gradually petered out as the light faded.
The forecast said that it would continue all day and probably not abate over the weekend. Obviously, it was time to break out the thick socks and sledges!
The following day a gang of us headed out to Shawford Down, the main roads were thankfully clear, and the journey was safe. The massive hill had been well used by local children the day before and was looking a bit worse for wear but it was still frozen so the sledges were soon flying along.
Spontaneous snowball fights broke out all over the place and zooming sledges made textbook targets. The sledgers could neither stop nor dodge the chilly-fingered assassins, as they slid toward their snow-spattered destiny.
A Direct Hit (Tee Hee)!
Amid the chaos on the slopes I spotted a tiny shrew darting about in the snow, doing the best he could to dodge the pandemonium that had descended on his home. I scooped him up in my gloves and deposited him somewhere more peaceful, amongst some grass.
Eventually it was time to get back home to thaw out and have some warm tea. Today it remains cold, there is still snow and ice everywhere and my snowball arm is aching from overuse!

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