Well, the big day was yesterday. The 60 something birthday and the day the snow was predicted to arrive. Isn’t that typical, you sit here Christmas day hoping for a blanket of white and it arrives in mid January when you don’t want it.
Ju had tried the sign of the cross to ward off the evil of an early start but as I was expecting a flood of visitors laden down with gifts I wanted to get back from the shopping. The reason for shopping on a Friday, blame Ju since she decided to start horse riding on a Saturday at one stage. OK, I admit that’s changed now but the shopping expedition seems to have stuck.
I woke her at 7 am with a cuppa, a warning that we had half an hour before leaving and that there was a smidgeon of snow on the ground. I backed out of the bedroom to ensure I could see any missiles heading in my direction. My coffee was in the lounge where I’d given all the girls a yoghurt drop as a treat. Ju cowered in her bedroom afraid to venture out in case she had a fit of conscience at not giving the girls their early morning outing on the settee. In fairness, I’ve told her if she wants to do it I’ll get her up at 6.am
I gathered the shopping bags, my list and the all important lottery pouch., brought Ju’s handbag through to the hall and said goodbye to the girls. Off we set. The winds of Siberia were howling around the front door and the smidgeon had become a couple of inches and it was still coming down. After what felt like a three mile trek to the car which is 50 feet away we hauled ourselves in and set a’shivering while waiting for the heater to kick in. The wipers took the worst off the screen and away we went.
Living by the coast has it’s benefits one of which is that snow rarely sticks here. I guess no-one was listening as I shouted a reminder to the gods. The coast road was still fairly clear and it had obviously been salted. We made good time to the supermarket arriving just before they opened at 8.am. The heater hadn’t done a fantastic job as some fool had opened the window to smoke. ahem. moving rapidly on……. I got out and walked stiff-legged to where the shopping trolleys were parked. I put in my £ coin and tried to pull mine away from the rest. After a few minutes trying I went to borrow an ice axe to separate them then shot into the warmth of the store.
Our routine is that Ju goes off to buy the lottery tickets and her paper then while I go round the store to shop, she sits and has a coffee till I’m in the queue at the till when she comes to help me pack.(If she sees me. I have pointed out that she stands a better chance if she actually faces the tills). Three quarters of an hour later I’m done and ready for a coffee and a diet conscious, diabetic, toasted sausage sandwich with brown sauce. Mmmmmm. As I’m sitting there Ju tells me Yvonne has phoned and won’t be able to get through because of the white stuff and her sister has phoned and said the same. Heavens above, what’s the matter with these people. Mu and John only live 40 miles away at the bottom of a valley with about 4 mountains between us. No-one makes an effort anymore. Looking out the window convinces me that maybe the gods are making an effort because the car is fast disappearing.
We’re on our way home when I remember that I promised to visit ‘our’ cafe Let me Tempt You, to take a pair of earring to one of the girls. When I mention it to Ju her lip seems to curl. I think it must be the cold contracting her muscles. We arrive home safely and the snow is sticking . We unpack and I say ” would you like a coffee sweetie”? “Yes please babe” is the response. “Grab your coat then and let’s take these earrings to K….”. I hear a growl and almost think there’s a dog handy but my beloved knows it’s my birthday and is humouring me. Borrowed tennis racquets on our feet we struggle back to the car. I try breathing on the lock to getthe key in but my nose sticks to the side of the car. Afraid Ju will drive off with me in this position I tug and take the skin off the tip off my nose. Oooh, that stings.
The Coast Road is still accessible and we make it safely to the cafe. K… looks up in surprise and said she didn’t expect to see us in view of the weather. I just say a promise is a promise. I’m renowned for my wisdom. Ju makes a comment about buying me my birthday drink and she head off to order while K… selects the earrings she wants. Leaving K… smiling happily I go to join Ju who has found us a table…….ha, 40 tables, 3 customers, how hard that must have been, and sit. I am no sooner ready to take my gloves off than the tray arrives with two of the staff who start to serenade me “Penblwydd Hapus i chwi. penblwydd hapus…..Dear David……..” I’m cringing and trying to crawl into my boots as everyone is looking and of course the next four customers in sat just behind me. I’m given a lovely card and a sweet little gift as well as a free coffee. Ah, and Ju must be warming up since the mouth seems to be grinning.
We came home about 11.30 and spent the rest of the day wrapped up warmly indoors. It carried on snowing.
Poor Ju was unwell and had to go to bed about 4.pm but it was not snow or shopping trip related. This morning she seemed a little better and the snow has stopped. They say we’ll have another little flurry than it should clear over the next few days but it’s going to be cold, verrrry cold with icy blasts in the minus. Maybe we can hibernate for a while. Oh, a phone call to say my next birthday is tomorrow when Yvonne and Ugo are going to come then another early next week when Mu and John come. Then the following Sunday when my nieces turn up. I quite like the idea of Official Birthdays and unofficial ones to follow.