Perhaps I had ambitions to be an MP - or an undertaker!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

So we really had a White Christmas - the first one for a good few years!

In some areas temperatures dipped to minus 15 degrees. The main roads have been kept clear, but snow is still lying frozen on the pavements in our village, and walking on them is difficult. I took those photographs a few days ago from our back garden, using the close-up lens for the first one.


Last year I included this poem in my Christmas blog. I’ve discovered that there are quite a few versions of “’Twas the day after Christmas,” but I think this is the best one, so here it is again -

‘Twas the day after Christmas and all through the house
Nothing would fit me, not even a blouse.
The cookies I'd nibbled, the eggnog I'd taste.
All the holiday parties had gone to my waist.

When I got on the scales there arose such a number!
When I walked to the store (less a walk than a lumber).
I'd remember the marvellous meals I'd prepared;
The gravies and sauces and beef nicely rared,
The wine and the rum balls, the bread and the cheese
And the way I'd never said, "No thank you, please."

So, away with the last of the sour cream dip,
Get rid of the fruit cake, every cracker and chip,
Every last bit of food that I like must be banished
Till all the additional ounces have vanished.

I won't have a cookie--not even a lick.
I'll want only to chew on a long celery stick.
I won't have hot biscuits, or corn bread, or pie,
I'll munch on a carrot and quietly cry.

I'm hungry, I'm lonesome, and life is a bore,
But isn't that what January is for?
Unable to giggle, no longer a riot.
Happy New Year to all and to all a good diet!


The painting I’ve chosen this week is “Thames Frost Fair” by Thomas Wyke

Between the 15th and the 19th centuries it was a common occurrence for the Thames in London to freeze over. In 1683-84 it lasted two months and I believe that’s when the painting was done.

John Evelyn the writer/diarist wrote this description -

Coaches plied from Westminster to the Temple, and from several other stairs, to and fro, as in the streets - sleds, sliding with skeetes, a bull-baiting, horse and coach races, puppet plays and interludes, cooks, tipling and other lewd places, so that it seemed to be a bacchanalian triumph, or carnival on the water.



I’ve been surprised at the interest shown in “Wise Men Say….” I began this blog in February 2006 and one week recently the site had 218 “hits.” From 18th July to 11th December there were 1776 visitors from 75 different countries including a fair number from very unlikely places.

I’ve very much enjoyed preparing these blogs. “80 plus” is gradually changing, for I’m afraid I’ve run out of boyhood memories. “John’s Quiet Corner” is my favourite, but I realise that both that site and “Haiku Homestead” don’t have the same general appeal.

“Wise Men Say….” will continue daily.
“80 plus”, “John’s Quiet Corner” and “Haiku Homestead” will be updated every Wednesday.
I’m hoping that it will be possible to run a second short series of “Scottish Tales from the Other World.”


For many years a great feature of Hogmanay in Scotland was the TV show “Scotch and Wry” with Rikkie Fulton as Rev I. M. Jolly. This clip is from the 1978 programme.


The New Year lies before you
Like a spotless tract of snow
Be careful how you tread on it
For every mark will show. (Anon)

1 comment:

Trinity said...

I've heard that the U.K.has been deeply affected by severe blizzard. It is reported that the schools there are closed , the roads are hampered by the heavy snow and even the power supply in some areas has been cut off. It seems that every place around the world has adverse weather these days. I'm wondering how is your village? Is everything okay?