Christmas week, bleak.
Not the bleak mid-winter of tales and imagination with deep snow and icy winds, the landscape frozen in nature’s frigid grasp.
Just wet, windy, dark. Incessant rain, water levels rising.
Days that didn’t seem to grow light as if the sun, hungover on festive excess, found the effort of rising beyond midday too much and slumped once more, dragging any vestiges of brightness with it.
Days without sky, just a low, wet fog blurring the boundary of land and air.
Days when colour drained from the landscape; land, water, sky all monochrome.
Running continued despite less than inspiring conditions – a couple of days on the high fells with map and compass in hand, enclosed in a grey world extending 100 metres, sometimes less. Good practice.
Sub hour runs fighting wind and rain. Returning cold and wet.
Short hill reps on a day when I couldn’t face battling the elements on the higher hills, hoping the effort would overcome the strong wind and rain and keep me warm. A vain hope, cold and wet again.
A day with a little respite, a brief hour when the sun tried, weak shafts reaching tentatively through the grey, a fleeting glimpse before the sky’s steely grey shutters slammed once more and the rain returned.
|A brief snatch of sunlight|
And now the rain has finally stopped, its mark has been made, the land sodden, rivers swollen, fields flooded.
But at last, now that the year has turned, for a short while at least there is a little ray of hope.