On Saturday we fly to Munich (where at present temperatures are in the high twenties, whereas here we are into single-figure temps.) From there, we travel with our son and his girlfriend on the train to Paris.
These nights sleep eludes as in my mind I both pack and unpack my suitcase and go over things to do before we leave.
Last night my daughter and her family were here for a celebratory meal.
As my birthday is in just under a week's time and my grandson's birthday in four weeks (while we are on the other side of the world) we were getting in early with the celebrations and the cake.
As I write this the rain lashes on to our (thankfully new) forest-green tin roof. Snow is forecast - a 'winter blast', a 'polar bomb' (just a couple of examples of the hyperbole TV copy- writers give us as they vie to come up with the most sensational and dramatic description). All I want is for it to be gone by Saturday so that we can get out to the airport.
photo of unexpected snow taken from my sister and brother-in-law's Wellington patio, two winters ago
I can just hear my late farmer-father sucking the air in through his teeth, sniffing the breeze and saying something droll, like: "Looks like we're in for some bad weather, but nothing we can't handle".
muddy tractor-tracks, Beaumont, New Zealand
There used to be a much more low-key and reserved approach to things, with none of today's hype and 'palaver' (another word my father would've used).
Too much satellite information engenders reports that are a mite over-wrought and over-thought. 'Snow' on its own is not news; but 'polar blast' is. And yes, I know that planet-warming is messing with our weather, but does it also have to mess with the TV weather scripts?
My second poetry book is called, 'Made For Weather'. I will keep this in mind tomorrow as I venture out, warmly wrapped.