Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Freezing cold ...

Well now... enough of the snow!  More than enough.  Temperatures well below eleven degrees Celsius last night and that means problems.
The biggest of them is frozen pipes at the rectory.  This is certainly going to prove a challenge as temperatures are forecast to stay like this until after Christmas.  There is still running water upstairs and the central heating isn't affected so it could be much worse.
I didn't stay too long out in the garden to take pictures ... 
However beautiful the patterns were on the bushes and the frozen webs ... it was cold.  Eliot had long since retreated to the house as I looked for interesting angles ... 
Any spider that sets foot on these webs will probably stick to them!  My hand almost stuck to the metal handle of the back door ... and the thermometer is way down below minus eleven again tonight ... I suppose spiders do have feet?  The ends of their legs aren't called paws, are they?  Just wondering ...
Language is such a fascinating subject.  I had a long conversation this evening over the differences between UK English and American English.  http://www.bg-map.com/us-uk.html   is just one of the places where these idiosyncrasies are noted. 
It is the season when we celebrate Holy Communion with the housebound.  On one of today's visits I spotted this beautiful tree against the blue sky and stopped for a moment to get some shots of it.  I couldn't get far enough back to capture the full length of it ... but the top was particularly striking.  
Being able to hold these private services is such a privilege and I wouldn't miss it ... though getting to some of the places is a bit of a challenge on the now hard packed ice.  It is a very strange sensation to feel the car move in a direction that you'd not planned ... and the end of our park is one area where you could so easily just continue to slide onto the main road!  
So comes to an end the shortest day of the year.  I missed the eclipse this morning ... pity ... it will be 400 years before it happens on the winter solstice again ... 
Soon the days will lengthen and once again the darkness will give way to the light. What a wonderful time of year to use as a celebration of the one who came as the Light of the World!  The darkness cannot, and will not, overcome that true light.

O come, thou Dayspring, come and cheer
our spirits by thine advent here;
disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
and death's dark shadows put to flight.
     Rejoice!  Rejoice!
     Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

Church Hymnal number 135
Advent Antiphons. 

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