Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Grab your hats and gloves you lot!

I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but here in North Yorkshire it’s white all over. The view from my bedroom window is truly like a picture postcard.

Winter_image1_320.jpgThat view has given me much enjoyment throughout the course of the day as I decided to stay in bed. Firstly because we rang the palliative care team and told them not to bother attending to us, which would involve tackling the very narrow dirt track road leading to our house. Secondly, because I think there is something inherently brilliant about being snuggled up under a duvet whilst looking out upon a cold, crisp winter’s day.

I lay here still.

As well as the view of the countryside, I delighted in watching Oscar’s antics as he experienced snow for the second time.  He tried with his mum and Granny Rosie to make a snowman, but apparently it wasn’t the right snow or something!  It was great to watch anyway and they all certainly had fun.

Unfortunately, the whole winter wonderland was tainted.  It was as if, underneath the pristine white snow, unpleasant gifts had been left by one of our canine friends.  This is metaphorically speaking of course.  In reality, these disappointments took the shape of intense fatigue, a considerably more difficult swallow and a sense of increased frustration which in turn led to a particularly short fuse on my part.  I have found myself snapping at my mum and Louise for no excusable reason such as a very slightly leaky mask or for not jumping to attention immediately upon my call.  Fortunately for me, neither one told me where to go.

I hope that the swallow situation is the result of the tiredness I continue to experience and not something more sinister.  It has resulted in a number of choking instances throughout the day, primarily where liquids have gone down the wrong way or my swallow reflex has been a bit slow.  I intend to get an early night to try and correct this, so I’ll let you know tomorrow whether this has had any effect.

I have tried applying my wicked sense of humour to today’s happenings, but unfortunately I have failed to find a funny side.  I will however concentrate my efforts on sharpening the wit overnight.  To make up for this, I will leave you with a fascinating fact:

Fascinating Fact No. 3: When I was about two, my mum sent me to ballet class.  I understand that this lasted only six months, I like to think this is due to a rebellion by the Yorkshire man in me.  Nevertheless this did not deter mum from trying to make the dancer in me burst forth, I was enrolled in the dance troupe “Kids 4 Kids” when I was about eight.  I can’t remember how long this lasted, but the Yorkshire man won!

Please refrain from openly laughing in front of me.  I feel it would be inappropriate use of the knowledge I have just bestowed upon you!
All my love,
Neil x


My first thought now, when it snows, is no longer how beautiful it is or if we will manage to get the sledge out and have some fun. I now think of the consequences of the snow for people who need services to reach them, I think of people who are cut off from the world if a car can’t get to them.

The house we were living in was about as perfect for our needs as we had been able to find, but it was down a single track lane. Our night-sitter for that night had gone above and beyond the call of duty by risking driving in very difficult conditions to get to us and had very nearly had to turn back. This was how much she knew we needed her and I was so grateful she had made the effort. I had done my best to clear the ramp and the steps and I had been all the way down the lane with a large bag of salt which Neil’s cousin had the foresight to bring for us in her 4x4.

When I saw more snow I didn’t feel excitement, I felt fear of being cut off and we didn’t know how long it would last, it just kept snowing. I hoped that nothing more sinister would happen to Neil in the night as a result of his difficult swallow. I worried that we would not be able to get help. – Louise (2013)

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Comments on Neil’s original post:

February 2, 2009 at 8:25 pm
Evening squire,

Yup, we got snow and then some down this neck of the woods. I haven’t been feeling too great this weekend anyway, so combined with the snow and travel nightmares, i took the expensive day off routine! Fun it was though, as we spent several hours in the back garden with thomas, building him an epic snowman, hat and scarf and the works! He got a bit cold, but loved it as im sure Oscar did, with a wierded out ‘what is this crazy white stuff’ routine:) It hasnt stopped all day, im hoping the trains are still going to be running on the morrow!

Glad you got to see Oz bezzing about in it, a really unique and wonderful moment. Hope your swallow is easier going in the morn dude, looking forward hugely to catching up in person next weekend.

Take care Neilly, love you loads

Tim, Soaf and Thomas x

February 2, 2009 at 9:44 pm
Hi guys,
good to here you got snow,
and yep, s..t happens. I hope its not your wonderful wife’s advice your finding hard to swallow.

Living on the southwest coast her in Norway we don’t get as much snow as you might think. Thank Odin for the Gulf stream. Lol
but having had a great deal of it over the years,
I feel its vastly overrated and it is best viewed from your window or on a postcard.

Hope you all sleep well and wake up laughing.
Love Neil. x

February 3, 2009 at 5:59 am
Hi Guys

Had to laugh when I saw the news today about the crippling blizzard that you have endured. We too suffer the same fate when the white stuff begins to fall (Transit shutdown, traffic mayhem and general panic with 3 cm on the ground)However we get to enjoy the magical “Snowday” that those in colder climates rarely experience and only dream of. I agree that the best way to experience this day is to watch the children from the comforts of the indoors preferably wrapped in a blanket close to the fire.

Hope you feel better in the morning.

Goodnight from Canada


February 3, 2009 at 10:05 am
Morning Neil , Wow i will not be able to look at you in the same light again, should i be refering to a 2nd Billy Elliot. Good on your Mum, i love a man in a dress!!!!
Hope you have a good day and your throat behaves it self today.
Lou xxx

Aunty Pau’s & Uncle Mel
February 3, 2009 at 12:08 pm
Hi Nephew
It was lovely to see you yesterday even though it was a short visit due to weather conditions. It was lovely to see you watching Oscar and the look on his face – don’t think he has quite grasped the idea of snow just yet!
Hope things are a bit easier for you this morning and that everyone’s ‘fuses’ have lengthened. With everything you all have to cope with you all do extremely well and everyone has off days.
Hope you manage the tucker – made the mash extra creamy.

See you soon
Lots of love to you all
Aunty Pau’s

cash & scoob
February 3, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Sorry to hear you’ve had such a bad day. My office was closed yesterday due to the snow and the complete failure of London’s transport system to cope with a few inches of snow!!!! To cheer you up I will email a picture Rick & I took in Greenwich park to Louise’s email address (I really need to check it’s the right one first, you’ll see why!!!) I hope it will put a smile on your face!!

A x

Dot Murphy
February 3, 2009 at 6:12 pm
Old Edina is just wet and cold, at least here in the N.W.corner. I couldn’t help smiling at you ballet confessions,(Jamie Bell eat your heat out) reminds me of my father making my big brother do the same movements which I was showing off after ballet classes(the parenting here was in the interest of exercise)never were there such looks of abject misery and sibling hate. I wonder if he remembers-I certainly would not bring it up. What a smug little s—- I must have been to comply -the poor sod must have been about ten! much love D x

Jill, David, Evie & Taylor
February 3, 2009 at 10:52 pm
Hi guys, well I am pleased to hear you didn’t have the right kind of snow either, cause we couldn’t make a snowman, it just wouldn’t stick together, only enough to bombard the twins with enough snow to make them look like snowmen. They cried a bit when I got them in the face but they soon got over it and got me back! At least we didn’t have the canine treats under the snow! I did explain about yellow snow but that only made Taylor look for yellow snow!!( Slightly dim I do think!!)
By the way….Evie & Taylor both do tap and ballet lessons once a week, so don’t you pass any comment to Taylor, he’s only agreed to do it on a bribe that he can do football once he is old enough, comments from Uncle Neil, will not be appreciated!!
Anyway, weather permitting, I’ll see you Thursday.
Luv you guys,

February 4, 2009 at 5:46 am
Hi Neil

I was so busy reading about the cold, snow and blizzard and thinking how much I was enjoying summer here this year when my eye caught the part about the DANCING LESSONS!!!

Now, when I was in London, we did alot of dancing and of course we knew that you were a bit of a mover but never once did you mention the dance troup!!!!

If only I could laugh openingly for you to see – personally I think you’re just a confused Yorkshireman!!!

Nice to see even when you’ re feeling down that actually your wicked sense of humour wins through.

Heard you had a lovely time catching up with Ricky recently – I can picture you both now all those years ago – DANCING!!!!!

Hope you and the family are doing ok mate.

Lots of love

Toni xxx

February 4, 2009 at 2:49 pm
Hamish has decided that he wants to go to ballet. But then Eilish and Màiri have also been dressing him up as a girl quite a lot. He is currently going to football on a Saturday morning and in the reverse of Taylor’s experience has been told that he has to keep going to football until he is old enough for ballet!

One morning as we lay in bed during the Christmas holidays we were even treated to an elaborately choreographed show inspired by Màiri’s pantomime début as snowflake no.3 in Cinderella at Earlsferry village hall. The girls chose the costumes and I think that Eilish did most of the make-up as the liberal application of slap would have put Robert Smith to shame.

In fact if this is confession time Màiri also devised parts and costumes for Sara and me. At the time I did, of course, think to blame their Aunty Louise for inspiring the interest in ballet and costume however this latest revelation makes me think that the two of you are equally responsible.

We do have a mid air shot of Hamish with a lipstick enhanced demonic grin re-establishing his boydom after the show by attacking us (still wearing the dress though). We will be using this when he is older. I am sure that its threatened release will ensure good behaviour at some point.

Does your Mum have any photographic evidence of your early interest in dance? If so I am sure that these would be as highly prized as the “Vickery as an Elf” series!

Best wishes,

Uncle Mel
February 5, 2009 at 5:49 pm
It must be something about Mothers who only have boys. They try to make them see their femenine side. With you it was Ballet Dancing (you could have been another Billy Elliott). With my mother it was Ballroom Dancing. I was enrolled in a dancing class in Hemsworth when I was about 13, and I was the only boy. I hated it, and in the end I would go walk about half an hour before I was due due to be washed, brushed up and dispatched.

I think thats why I cannot stand the plonckers on “Strictly Come Prancing” or “Falling on Ice”

See ya later Big Fella

xx Uncle Mel xx
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