Too many shades of grey by Andrew Southwood

It’s been one of the longest winters I can remember. Not the coldest, not the whitest, but the relentless damp dark cloudy days have pushed even us weather optimists to the edge.
It’s not like we’ve been flooded out with torrential rain, but just a steady build up of unyielding wet days with no breaks to let us dry out. The grass fields have turned to saturated quagmires. Kids football matches descended to mud baths. You’re more likely to have lost a trainer in the swamp like conditions at Parkrun than have got a pb.
During a brief and rare semi-break in the gloom I took my kids to Ickworth Park for some fresh air. As we opened the gate to the play area my heart sank. The entire play park was a bog, more akin to an enclosure for a drift of pigs than children. Two inches of slimy wet mud surrounded everything. I couldn’t see a single blade of grass. This wasn’t just a case of needing wellies, more like needing full wet suits, and then a pressure hose at the end before being allowed back in the car.
However, I think it was the day after this ill fated trip to Ickworth when something extraordinary and quite unexpected happened. A large bright yellowy orange circle appeared in the sky. It was surrounded by this beautiful peaceful blue backdrop and almost, just almost, emitted some warmth that could be felt on my pale vitamin D deprived skin.
Yes, the sun came out and suddenly all was right with the world. People smiled at each other in the street, I left the house without a woolly hat, and the whole of Suffolk had a spring in its step. It was simply glorious wasn’t it!.It made us all remember what we have been missing for so many weeks.
Of course the problem is it can’t last forever, and so, as the children returned to school, the heavy drizzle returned. My solar PV generation dropped to a wattage barely enough to power my phone charger. I was left wondering if I had dreamt those days of blue skies and sunshine.
Yet, as far as I am aware, the earth still spins on its tilted axis and moves around the sun. These undisputed astronomical facts mean that spring, and then the summer, must follow in due course. Keep faith in the science. At some point in the coming months we will see sunshine and feel warmth!

 

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