Icy Surrealists

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Sheep! Move your bloody arses or I'll swat you with a BA blanket and flick cold coffee on your wool. Oh yes, I'm prepared for all eventualities.

Several worried texts, a couple of calls and an email had me leaving the office yesterday two hours early to pick up Rose from netball, as apparently it was going to snow. A man down the hall insisted on escorting me to my car through a couple of pathetic flakes and hanging about like a bad smell to make sure it started. My eyeballs couldn't have rolled back further in my head as he approved the blanket lightfingered Rose liberated from British Airways a few weeks ago, that was crumpled on the floor of my Jeep. I sniggered 'half a Starbucks left from this morning, might come in handy too.'

It took me an hour and a half to make the 25-minute journey to netball practice. The snow was coming down pretty fast and furious by this point and the traffic was averaging ten miles per hour. The netball coach was standing outside with a roll-up in his mouth, watching the girls belt about in shorts through what was by now very thick snowfall. I grabbed Rose and her chum Leona and popped them in the car to drop Leona at home.

Leona's mum Natasha is an artist who also makes tiny celebrity pixie shoes, and yes, it is as surreal as it sounds. She said, 'you'll never get home in this, stay here. The radio says it'll get worse. I'll light a fire and make hot chocolate. It'll be like in a film.' Pffft. How I snorted. Rose, disappointed at no emergency sleepover, slumped in the front seat. Off we set.

Two hours and a fruitless, frozen and frighteningly skiddy half a mile later, we were back. Natasha was black-faced and red-eyed. 'I've set the house on fire,' she said. And she had. In the slowly dispersing smoke, a man was pouring water on the rug and brandy into a glass. 'You'd better have one too,' he said and crept carefully off into the white night. 'It's like being in a film,' said the faerie cobbler several times as we ate dinner, watched the girls build a snowman, chatted to a random bloke from New York who was passing the gate, listened to the snow cracking her ancient iron drainpipes, sat on the Aga to warm our frozen arses, popped a bottle of Champagne and made Jerry Hall's miniature cowboy boots dance on our fingers across the floor of her studio.

We finally made it home this afternoon at 2pm. We gave two hitchhikers a ride. They had both abandoned their cars. I positively oozed Dunkirk spirit. Rose had the blanket on her knees and I considered splitting the cold latte with the strangers. The 12 mile journey was littered with abandoned cars and a Morrison's lorry had jacknifed across the big roundabout and sat empty. Tree branches had fallen, and we listened to the local radio station taking calls from pretty much the entire county who had also been taken in by strangers. There were a couple of hairy brake-lock moments, but we made it. There has never been snow like it in these parts. The Colonel was waiting with two bum-shaped rubber sledge things we bought in Denmark on the offchance, and he, the bots and I have spent the afternoon whizzing down a hill and filling each other's collars with handfuls of snow.

Really, it's been just like a film.


  1. So much fun as usual! of course snow, when it is not a winter staple, is much harder to manage. Here, I am afraid we have to deal with it regularly, but the towns and cities are very equipped for that and it makes a huge difference. Bon courage for the rest of your inevitable adventures!

  2. What an adventure! Glad you made it home safely.
    Jerry Hall, Champagne and Miniature Cowboy boots what a juxtoposition of images that congures up!
    I know thise bum shaped rubber thingy's we have one too...thank goodness we have not had to use it this winter!
    Snuggle up to that AGA, you are home safe and sound.

  3. Did you get heat at your office yet? We are having a heavy snow here starting tonight,but being a retired lay about I won't have near the fun you had.

  4. JADH - winter in NY, you lucky lady. One of my favourite things ever...

    Hostess - what a lovely thing to say - thank you! Sadly, I don't have an Aga any more, I just seem to snuggle up to mates who do. Go on, get you rubber bum shape out, good for the soul!

    James - no idea, only went in yesterday, first appearance since December 11th and now we're on no-school-snow-panic-bot-heaven, so Lord knows when they'll next see my snarling, sorry, smiling little face.

  5. Sounds like quite an adventure! Glad to hear you made it home safely!
    I love your blog and enjoy every post! (Also I have never met anyone else asides from myself that refers to her children as bots, so I knew right away that I liked it here!)

  6. Crazy weather-the world is coming to an end. Spend money-drink-debauch and please....get the damned snow out of the way before the first week of February-I'm coming to London.

  7. How many times can I say it? You are hilarious. We have tons of snow. Of course per usual it managed to miss Christmas for the 25th year in a row. I LOVE snow. Dogs are sooooo happy. Driveway slippery as are all the roads in our little village, but it's grand.

    Keep us au courant on your film adventures. Set her house on fire?


  8. ADG - London will be fine, it's us unsophisticated provincials who are stuffed.

    Yes, I read it in the Telegraph Court Circular. I have two words of advice: no jodphurs.

    Tish - it would appear that snow blocks chimneys so the fire she made whooshed back into the sitting room and stuff went up. It was bonkers. But fun.

  9. Lily - do you really call your bots too? How utterly amazing. And lovely!

  10. Bloody Hell Els.... have been hearing about the snow from the various rellies in UK but this sounds like something else altogether!!

  11. Is completely amazing - everyone acting like it's WWII; nobody leaving their houses, shops out of milk, bread etc. Just hysterical, all the grown ups out on tea trays...

    Am really hoping we don't get any more this weekend as the novelty is starting to wear right off!

  12. Can't stop picturing your minnie Jerry Hall cowboy boots paired with Maxminimus' Harris Tweed wanker coat...XXOO

  13. Christ, I never thought of keeping a bottle of Champagne in in case of snow. I must do that.

  14. Summer - I think we need a chat about Max's use of the word - he'll terrify and shock the natives if he comes out with that sort of thing in February...

    Coffee - just nipped over for a quick cuppa, love your blog. Well, that's not EXACTLY how it transpired, but yes, that makes us sound like eccentric spontaneous ladies rather than boozy old soaks.

    I thank and welcome you!

  15. Now why doesn't anything like this happen to me? Adventure, excitment, champagne then snow ball fights? I get 3 inches of snowy dust and a lecture about hoarding at the local village shop - I ask you! Glad you got home safe ...

  16. You know...if you threw in a couple lines about a restaurant you'd have an AA Gill review here.

  17. Tattie - and so am I. Also chuffed it's melting and I can get on with real life. Such as it is..

    Tintin - I think we've had this out already, the AA Gill thing. I believe I have capitulated on Scottish and alcoholic but drew the line at smart-arse curmudgeon.

    Now stop it.


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