So where's the snow?

Muddling through life from Austria to Wales; God, life and a small black dog

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Ghost Golf Course!

A few days ago we had heavy, misty cloud, and as I took Swingle for her afternoon stroll, it was quite eerie. We had the whole course to ourselves, apart from a couple of crows.

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Storm Dudley

I gleefully walked on the Mountain Ash golf course on Wednesday morning, just as the storm reached us.

It was much brighter than this shot, but I quite like the effect.

The course had been shut most of the week due to heavy rain and there were no golfers in sight, yippee!

Swingle and I walked on all the fairways and areas where we usually have to avoid them.

The light was fantastic and I got loads of great piccies. I haven’t been able to colour up the rainbow over Aberdare though.

Tonight, Thursday, we are bracing ourselves for another storm, Eunice.

All the transport in Wales is shutting down and the schools are closing, I guess to cheers as it extends the half term.

I’ve even looked for the candles.

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Crazy winter!


Last weekend (Jan 10th) we had the most nutty weather.We knew a cold front was going to hit a warm front, but that’s not unusual, but the varitaion in temperature was extreme. It rose to +13, and as you can see all the snow in the yard melted leaving a sheet of ice. In the morning, I saw more of these fast moving clouds that refract the light, as I saw when this first happened,  they seem to be going with this phenomena. Its also I guess something to do with the angle of dun and light in the morning – both time it happened practically due south. Apparently it’s called cloud iridescence, and its not only due to the light but ice crystals!


The next day it snowed. Out came the snow shovels!All this week, its been lovely and cold,real winter, but with temperature inversion, that it was warmer at the top of the hills than here in the valley!


Now today, a week later, its doing it again. The temperature rose from +1 to +9 and back down again in a couple of hours.  I saw a tinge of colour in the fast moving skies, we’ll see of the 50 cm of snow predicted turns up tonight!

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So how has your garden grown?


Following a warm and damp winter, we’ve now had a warmish and damp summer. The neighbours are blaming us, saying it came from England – and some of it did!!!!  There was one time in late spring when temperatures got to the low 30s,and today, August 30th, we have all the signs of an early autumn. We’ve harvested the carrots, as the tops were turning, but what a crop!  The parsnips are looking good, but they need to wait for the frost to sweeten them up. We also had loads of peas and broad beans. The courgettes and Okaido pumpkins haven’t liked the colder nights, and have slowed right down in growth, and the strawberries were lousy. The sweetcorn may not ripen with the continuing rain, we’ll see.  BUT loads of redcurrants for a first attempt at wine, and blackcurrants for jam and liquor. Such a difference form this time last year when the whole valley was drying up.

The geraniums haven’t liked the damp and cold, and have reacted by going nuts in their flowers, here another example of a white plant bearing a red flower.


Next year we’re planting less sorts of veggies but more of them, carrots, peas, broad beans, Okaidos, strawberries.

The summer has still gone too quickly. Some of the sycamores are starting to change. I don’t mind a early autumn, if we get snow in November and the crisp dry cold, rather than the soggy dampness of the past few years that went straight to Dave’s chest.

But it’s been an unusual summer. The hay crop has been rained off several times. Cold nights in August.  Sooo much rain. So how has your summer/winter (for those in other climes) been?


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We’re always being told about how things go back to your childhood, but this one I know goes back. No idea how old I was, but in our house in Winchester, we had a huge storm overhead. A loud one. and I was scared. I must have yelled. So for once I had my mother’s attention and I think my brothers too as they banged away on the piano and made me laugh. So I relate storms as being positive things, where I have some love and attention around me. Daft innit?


It also means that I like to play ‘scare’ in the garden when a storm comes down the valley, just how long before the closeness sends me scuttling in. There’s probably something Freudian in that too!


Coming storms also send me out with the camera for shots of building clouds and dark horizons. We’ve had a spate of daily storms going along with the recent hot spell.


This farmhouse always reminds me of the house peeping over the hill at the start of ‘watch with mother’. Showing my age here!

The farmers around went mad cutting their fields for hay, and maybe for once showed more sense in realising that the weather would break earlier than the forecast said. A few did still get caught out with wet hay left in the field but I guess that’s not so important with silage.



Do You like storms?

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Hot spring!


The weather here continues to be very warm, and of course it seems worse because Easter is so late and the ski resorts are trying to cling on for their bookings, but many lower ones are already closed and I’ve seen people trying to ski over the brown patches.

And so we’ve been doing a lot in the garden, much earlier than usual. I’ve had the Geraniums in the spare room for nearly a month with a little water bringing them on, and Dave is now making noises about putting them in the green house, but we are still having low nighttime temperatures with a little frost, me thinks he’s getting carried away this time, not me!

We’ve put the swing seat in its new place and have already wasted several hours just sitting, watching and listening to the waterfall. The other effect is that although we had a snowfall a couple of weeks ago, there has been no rain and already the farmers are wingeing about their grass growth, but farmers all over the world are never happy!  Nevertheless
after last year, we’re investing in another water barrel for the summer. We were in Salzburg this week and as usual its six weeks ahead of us, with the magnolias nearly over , forsythia in full gas and the trees covered in this strange green stuff. And I’m glad that I have all this to look forward to!  I wonder if a rich person could travel around the world and so live in permanent spring?