Sunday, 9 December 2012

White out

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A six inch fall of snow is a rare event in England. I remember in 1969 being stuck at school and returning home late at night past hedges transformed by the blizzard into fantastic sculptures. Maybe it was more memorable because the strict gender segregation on the bus was forgotten in the excitement. The next real snow I remember was ten years later when London was blanketed. Two years ago a Christmas holiday visit to London coincided with enough snow to toboggan on Parliament Hill Fields. In between my memory of snow in England is of cold, damp anticlimax. Welcome then to winter in Romania. Yesterday's first real snowfall persisted for over 20 hours and left six inches of soft white icing on cars, trees, hedges and roofs. Vehicles turned the snow on the roads into the familiar black mush and dogs left their yellow signatures wherever they could but the Christmas card feeling is unsupressed. Snow scenes are beguiligly photogenic and can be surprisingly colourful. Even the hard work of clearing the pavement and roadway does not dispel my schoolboy enthusiasm. The forecast for Monday night is -18C. Let's see how long Romania's sustained snow climate holds its charm.

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