Being English I have to constantly keep in check my instinctive desire/need to write and talk about the weather. I do manage it for the most part, but occasionally I have been known to slip into it (f'rinstance when I talk to my parents on the phone). It's not that talking about the weather is a bad thing exactly, just that it sort of implies you can't think of anything else to talk about (which, obviously is often the case, at least for me). Also, living in the Coldest Place in Romania (TM), in which winters are brutal and vicious affairs, having previously lived in Vermont, USA in which winters are etc and so on, there is always the tendency to look down upon other people's weathers as being sort of a bit weak and pathetic (which I'm quite sure is more than a little irritating, at least judging by the "why don't you just shut up" reactions I get).
Anyway, because I have nothing else to talk about, and because I am not currently in a position of being able to poo-poo the mild and temperate weather of the rest of Europe, I feel it is time to comment on this so-called winter. For while the UK shivers and grumbles contentedly under severe snowstorms and people stocking up for the ice-age in Tescos, Csikszereda (and the rest of Romania, but it feels more noticeable here) is sitting around twiddling its thumbs in what appears to be spring. Which began about three weeks ago. There was a cold period at the beginning of the year when it was down to the standard -20 ish, but since mid January it hasn't dropped below zero. This weekend we picked snowdrops, for god's sake. Snowdrops in early February.
Every year, on February 2nd, as everyone who has seen the Bill Murray film will know, a groundhog (which appears to be some kind of large rodent, not dissimilar to a wombat) is dragged out of hibernation in the town of Punxutawney, Pennsylvania and asked to predict when winter will end. He's not terribly specific and just limits to his predictions to either "6 more weeks of winter" or "less than 6 more weeks of winter", which always baffled me when I lived in Vermont since the winter finishing in mid-march would actually be reasonably early, but there you go. I have no idea what he said this year, or indeed why I started this paragraph at all, but that's blogging while doing a number of other things at the same time for you. By the time you come to finish a thought, it started so long ago that you have no idea what it was you wanted to say, but being too lazy to delete the whole thing (I mean and waste all those words), you just plough on regardless.
So, the weather, then. It's errm a... thing, isn't it?
(If anyone happens upon this post while searching for the best blog post of 2009, I'm hereby nominating it as my candidate. )