Culture

Week Six – One Day At A Time

By Bernie Bell

Pics by McB

February the Fifth………And the weather is horrible……..cold cold cold….wet wet wet…..windy windy windy.  A day to bring in a ‘bucket of fire’, set and light the stove, and be glad you don’t have to actually go out to go to work.

It’s been a grim winter – here’s looking to a fine, dry spring.

February the Sixth……The Beast From The East – 2………….bitterly cold wind with snow flurries. 

Mike needs to have a big clear out in the pond, but it’s completely frozen.  It’s gone from being ‘mature’ to being just plain clogged up. So, as soon as time and weather permit, he’ll need to put his waders on, get in there, and clear it out.  Dean, of ‘The D Team’, who cut our meadow for us, says he knows people who will gladly take the excess pond plants, and also someone who has a piece of soggy land which she would like to make more attractive, so, some of the marginal plants can go to her.

The frogs could turn up any time in March, so Mike is keen to get on with that job. But not today…oh no…..

February the Seventh……..The first snowdrops of the year!  Or, the first ones we’ve seen.  They were by the grave of William MacKay in the Kirkyard on the Bay of Hinderayre. https://theorkneynews.scot/2018/10/07/the-old-kirks-of-orkney-part-one/ . That’s where we see the first snowdrops every year.

I’d been struggling a bit – drowning in the waves of non-sense happening in the world.  Seeing those snowdrops, having that walk, even in the bitter cold – raised my spirits and did me a world of good.

Here they are, the little joy-bringers………..

February the Eighth……..I received a letter with an appointment for my Covid vaccination.  I am worried about it, as I have what a doctor once described as ‘a reactive system’, and I do….react!  Sometimes in a positive way…sometimes not. 

But…and it is a big BUT….. I know that I must have it, I also know that, the more of us have it, the safer it is for everyone. So, I’ll go for it – try to stay calm – see what happens – only thing to do.

February the Ninth…… There’s an igloo at the bottom of our garden!…….Not really, it’s a hedgehog house.  It’s tucked in right under the hedge and for most of the year we can’t see it.  At this time of year the hedge is bare ……..a fall of snow, and …we have a mini-igloo!  John Rae might approve!

February the Tenth………..It’s not Valentine’s Day……but I was wandering about in the garden, saw a big stretch of clear snow, was tempted, and ……….

Any day – can be Valentine’s Day!!!

February the Eleventh………..Geese – rising from the fields.  Not a sight to please everyone – but very much of the time of year.

When we were planning to move to Orkney, people said if we still wanted to stay here after going through an Orkney February, then we really did want to stay here.   This year’s February so far has been wet, cold, cold, wet, windy, wet, cold, windy.  Weather or not, we wouldn’t choose to live anywhere else.

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