Well I’ve never known the like. Of course we get snow early on occasion and we get cold snaps but nothing like this. The other evening we were driving home along the coast road and it was –11.5 C Usually the coast is moderated by the sea, being cooler in summer and warmer in winter, but not at the moment.
We’ve a good foot of snow over the fields but hat’s off to Gwynedd council, the C road at the bottom of the track is passable and gritted. Bit worrying to hear they’re down to 2 days stock of grit now.
This weather is showing us the importance of planning ahead and being prepared. In many ways I’m still thinking like a townie and I’ve got to get my head into gear. I cannot just nip off to shops because I forgot something and I wish I’d thought to stock up on fuel before this snow got really bad.
I popped up to the coal merchant who had run out of logs so I got 4 bags of smokeless fuel for the stove. Now carrying a 20 Kg bag for 80 yards or so might not seem like a big deal, but carrying them up a slope in a foot of snow is somewhat harder. Enough to make me decide to leave the other bags until we’re desperate!
If I’d got stock in earlier, we’d have logs and I’d have been able to get up the track in the car, which is now living in the layby just off the main road. Hindsight is such an exact science.
We’ve had a few people say ‘you ought to get a 4 wheel drive’ but I’m very loathe to do so. I’ve no desire to drive around in a gas-guzzling truck the size of a small lorry and pay enough tax to bring a smile to the chancellor’s face.
So, like some of our neighbours, I’ll stick to leaving the car in the layby and trudging up the track in snowy weather. Talking of neighbours, another one showed up at the door with a Christmas card and a cake. We were so touched and felt really lucky to have landed here where people are so friendly.
I met a local farmer down at the layby a few days ago who asked if I was the writer. I said I was and he then asked if I intended turning all the fields over to vegetables! I had the distinct feeling that there was some air of disapproval at the thought of growing vegetables on pasture. The proper use of fields being sheep, of course.
I explained we would be turning 10 rods over to veg but the rest would stay as they were. I didn’t raise the plans for productive hedges and trees. My permaculture ideas might get me talked about in the pub.
Anyway, we’re learning a lot about rural living, community and Wales.
And now the important bit of this ramble.
We’d like to thank all our readers, forum members and online friends for their help and support over the last year. We’d also like to wish everyone a really Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Have a great time over the holidays and if you’re travelling, be safe.
John & Val