So where's the snow?

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


Snow Prediction

I always have fun guessing what the season will be like, most times wrong, but after last year’s extremes, I have ideas!

The seasonal early snow and rain in November were EXTREME! So, I’m pluming for a mildly white Christmas day here in Lungau. Then heavy, heavy, heavy snow which will be gone by Easter and we’ll have an early warm spring with no frosts to ruin the fruit.

I can hope!  What about the winter where you are?

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This year has been a good one for mice. In one of our holiday houses, they’ve been coming in since the beginning of September. They’ve got in the water meter reading station.  Eaten my apples in the cellar right down until there’s just a mark in the crate. Fighting with the birds for the peanuts. They’re big mice too. When I asked the chimney sweep, he says it’s like this all over the Lungau.

‘It means it’s going to be a very cold winter,’ he said in tones of deep foreboding.

But is this plague not simply the result of a very successful breeding summer for the mice? They couldn’t possibly grow so big if there hadn’t been a lot of food and the right conditions? Or maybe in the past, a warm summer was followed by a colder winter? Often local sayings are right, so I’m off to buy some more fire wood…

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Cows in the barn!

I came across these shots which I took in the autumn as the cows were being taken in. The more modern barns have hardstanding, and I understand tethering isn’t allowed.

In the winter when I see some cows obviously shoved out in the cold and waiting to come in, I’m inclined to think no one asked the cows if they wanted to go out. Can’t be that bad, food delivered, bed cleaned, warmth(if a bit smelly) and friends to chat to.

Can’t be that bad, these ladies were enjoying the breeze on a warm afternoon!

Just to cheer us up on these cold days!

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Winter season!

I used to spend my winters feeling caged, now the days just aren’t long enough!  We have three big holiday houses and the main ski season launches in February. Might have two courses next month teaching English conversation,  one morning, one evening. Snow clearing for all the houses. Dog walk twice a day. Library twice a week, and I’m just doing the ‘Jahresmeldung’ for funds, not so fraught the second time around.  One block of flats to collect Guest tax from once a week.  But most of all working hard on the books. Baize Door will soon be relaunched as Challenger, Compromise is finished and with the beta readers and an editor. Tom will be re-released at Easter. Third book to be written, which will be set in Austria. Roll on spring!

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Today we had the first real frost of this winter. Dave and I walked in the woods with the dog and I knew, at last, the cold dry air had arrived and it feels like champagne. To have a warm coat but your face in the cool air, it’s a joy after the heat of summer.

Later on, when I took Swingle for her afternoon stroll the sun was now shining and in the still air, freshly lit fires had their smoke dropping down and looking like mist. I greeted Mr B who had cold hands again, but not like yesterday, perhaps I’ll get him some for Christmas.

Garden all tucked up for winter.

We swung down the hill and I could see Tony harrowing his field. I could smell the sour, late, crushed grass. Soon the cold air will absorb anything that smells outside -excluding slurry of course and there will be no scents in the air. I had David Essex’s It was only a winter’s tale playing in my head too.

There was a peace in the air and maybe it is also within me. God has been teaching me things when I had felt so far from him. I am seeing how bad-tempered I can be, blaming things on Dave, when it is my perception and I can see him realising when he has been unnecessarily grumpy too and making up for it. We have a time of peace until the ski season starts.  I haven’t felt like this for such a long time. Thank you.