Friday, January 8, 2010
A Winter Blunderland
This is a photo from this morning's Daily Telegraph. It is a picture of the whole of Britain.
There will be no walking done during the four days we are here. Conditions do not allow, even if our rather hurried schedule could fit it in.
We drove off the ferry in Portsmouth on Wednesday morning (after a one-hour delay which resulted in us reversing down a very narrow alley because there was a fault) to find ourselves in a place obliterated by snow. There were thousands of abandoned vehicles on the motorways. We were diverted here, there and everywhere. It took us 7 hours to drive to Cheltenham - a distance of less than 200 kms.
We stayed with long-term friends Fred and Brenda and arose on Thursday to find that the temperature a couple of miles away had been recorded as minus 17 degrees Celsius. But the motorways (at least, the ones we were using) were clear by then and we had an easy drive to Ambleside. Several hotels are closed because of the weather, but the Ambleside Lodge had stayed open for us - we are the only guests.
Once again, this country seems completely unprepared for a burst of bad weather - just about to run out of rock salt for the roads, schools closed everywhere, people not making the effort to struggle to work.