There are no children in the playground on this bright and sunny, but bracing, day.
Perhaps the wind is too cold for them?
Or, more than likely, for their minders?
Children don't feel the cold when they are running around, but adults idly sitting on benches do.
But aconites and snowdrops are willing to brave the sharp winds and stick their heads above ground.
Even the daffodils are fattening and showing colour.
I've never before seen a January like this in the Valley.
I sincerely hope we are not going to have a severe shock to the system. There is plenty of time left for winter to punish us.
These are traditionally the coldest days of winter.
Keep good watchdogs about you these dark nights!!!
|Benno as painted by my friend Jay Diamond,|
a pet portraitist.
The watchdog ought to be horrible, fierce, strange and unacquainted with all except his master, so that he be always at daggers-drawing, and ready to fight with all who shall but lay hands on him. For which cause he ought to be instructed from his littering: let him often be provoked by boys; and as he groweth, let some stranger set on him with weapon, with whom let him combat; and then let him tear some piece of the provoker's garment, that so he may depart with the conceit of victory. These dogs ought to be black-coloured, and great mouthed for barking bigly, so that he may terrify the thief both night and day.
Edward Topsell - The History of Four-Footed Beasts - 1607.
Dear me, really? Benno is big and black and he has a loud and full-throated bark, but he's a bit short in the ferocious and bravery departments. But he'd be quite willing to slobber a thief to death, if that's any good?