Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Extreme Weather Disruption : National Snowtime Holiday Proposal

Snow hysteria rocks Britain. The TV news alternates images of kids having the time of their lives with hard-hitting interviews with Ministers, trying to Pin The Blame on Someone.

Outside in the real world, the trees are dressed with an icing of brilliance, uncountable water molecules that have changed from vapour to crystalline solids, each ice crystal unique in its structural identity as a human being (but do we really KNOW this?).

I find my touring skis and (eventually, after searching house from loft to ottoman) boots, and set out onto Dolebury Warren. Walking up the path, I trip (not slip) and my right thigh lands on a stone. The subsequent pain every time I use my right rectus femoris spoils the fun of the skiing, though there is still the old Nordic magic of moving effortlessly downhill through the virgin snow, ridged with windblown patterns like the grain of an ash tree, the soft hiss of displaced snow, like flying.

Now it hurts every step I take. But I don't mind. That's snow.

Back to the TV presenters. Why does Somebody Have to be Responsible for the Disruption? This is Nature, white in tooth and claw. Nature reminding us that in the end, She is stronger than us.

People are moaning that schools and workplaces are closed ("When I were a child, we walked barefoot through ten miles of snowdrifts higher than a house to get to school, only to get a dose of the taws on our bare buttocks because we were late. It didn't do us any harm, apart from I write letters like this to the Daily Mail all the time...")

Why shouldn't schools and work close down if it is difficult to travel (apart from on skis)?
Why shouldn't we have a Public Holiday when it snows? Who wants to be indoors when the world is wearing its bridal dress?

Norway copes with more snow than us, because it has snow for four months a year, so it makes sound economic sense to gear up for it. There would be no economic sense in our matching Norway's level of preparedness for a four days of snow every other year.

Don't go to work if it snows, unless you are an emergency service. Lots of people can work from home anyway. Unneccessary traffic just makes things worse. Cars are designed for tarmac, just as skis and skates are designed for snow and ice. No matter how slowly you drive, you can lose control, endangering other people and your bank balance too. Your car gets stuck, you abandon it, the road is closed off for people who really need to use it (Like the garage mechanic who is called to drag your useless heap of metal out of the way).

Let's all stay home and enjoy ourselves when it snows!

Student Medic thinks the same way.


Anonymous said...

Let the puritanical Protestant work ethic types moan and be miserable ... the rest of us have had a great time!

DocRichard said...

Yes indeedy. Wahey!