Watching nature take its course, from the top of a hill in northern England

Seasonal Variations


It all seems a little odd, first we were prisoners to the storm, the beast from the east; we’ve certainly had more depth of snow in the past, but never such a blizzard,  it roared on for 36 hours.

We hunkered down and were grateful for lives both personal and professional that allow for a generous dollop of flexibility, and that no longer involve the great debate of can we get the boys to school in this? Will it be open when we get there? And will it be closing anytime soon? We don’t miss that scenario at all…

Last Sunday the lane was still full to the brim with snow,

Drifts 2018

It was deep enough to dissuade the usual selection of 4×4 adventurers that come out to play when it snows (  and who were busy being helpful to those in need). We were able to get out in the opposite direction, after the top road was ploughed, by one of the farmers who is contracted to clear the roads when the going gets tough.

It was Wednesday before the ‘garden cat’ reappeared from the drift that had engulfed  it a week before


Then more snow came on Thursday and ambushed it again, at least it covered the filthy snow* and as Clive James  describes it ‘hushed the whole thing up’.

Bandit cat-0004

There was something rather disorientating  about so much snow and ice at this time of year, the light, the birds singing, when they could be heard over the roar of the wind, it just didn’t seem natural.  So many hungry birds.

Finch hawthorn-0010

Today it has been 11c, in the defrosting pond toads are croaking (Spud the dog, scared them away from a photo opportunity) and amongst the snowdrops

bee snowdrops 2-0046

bees are humming and feasting. Whatever next.

bee snowdrops 3-0040

* this was the first and probably the last time you’ll find me cleaning windows, at –3c, after the blizzard passed, we couldn’t see out!


Author: uphilldowndale

Watching the rhythm of rural life, from the top of a hill in northern England. Having spent most of my life avoiding writing, I now need to do it! I am no domestic goddess, but if I were expecting visitors to my home, I would whisk round with the duster and plump up the cushions and generally make the place look presentable. I hope that by putting my words where others may see them it will encourage me to ‘tidy up and push the Hoover around’ my writing. On the other hand I may just be adding to the compost heap. Only time will tell! Pull up a chair, sit yourself down, I’ll put the kettle on.

5 thoughts on “Seasonal Variations

  1. How strange but cheering to see bees hard at work so soon after the storm. You did get a good dollop of snow , far more than we in the west got.

  2. Those little insects are just as hungry as the birds. It’s wonderful that, however strange the circumstances, they’re finding something to eat.

    I love your garden cat. It’s so handsome there in the snow — although no doubt a little chilly!

  3. I’m thankful that we don’t get that much snow here. It’s always good to see bees about, especially at this time of year. xx

  4. Your lane is clogged with more snow than we have here in Manitoba right now. The sharp edged drift is rather pretty, in a sculptural sort of way, but perhaps only from the perspective of someone who doesn’t have to move the snow!

Come on, join in.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s