It is of course part of life that when noticing big black clouds stumbling across the sky I check the direction of movement and today noticed the end in sight. I made off for the shops as the clouds drifted north east. By the time I crossed the park the wind changed and small hailstones began to cut through those of us caught out in it. It had become a blizzard by the time I reached home 'Nanook of the North' like. I knew my cheap shoes leaked, I know by how much now!
Bah! I only went out to get away from the laptop. My weight will not decrease unless I exercise, this however is limited by the need to discover POW camps and those who were held therein or actions involving the Home Guard, that's Dad's Army to most of us. This exercises the ends of my fingers as I type, and both are showing signs of blisters, the position taken leads to blood not running to my hands properly so the arms ache, the feet do also with the cold weather as I stretch out to reach the heater when it is on thus doing my weary muscles no good whatsoever.
But not being one to complain I just get on with it, unless my fingers go numb of course.
Reading through Bede's 'Ecclesiastical history of the English People' some time ago, not the greatest book I have read but interesting, I was interested to read how the weather affected the monks there. Based on the north east coast of England, just below what is now the Scottish border, they had the delight of the North sea on their doorstep. This is a marvellous place to live but with an east wind arriving from the Arctic, coming via Siberia, Poland and anywhere freezing cold in between, it can be a bit nippy.
Consider that one of the main jobs the lads had was the writing of those illuminated manuscripts. Great huge hand written bibles featuring large artistic letters, delightful drawings, flowery letters and all on hand made parchment. Imagine scribbling away on these, once you had made both the writing implements and the ink to be used, when your fingers were numb and the stone building in which you worked did not possess electric or gas heating systems. On one occasion an Abbot far away in France wondered why the books ordered did not arrive and was informed the weather was so bad they could no longer write!
Aestheticism can be a way of life some choose however it is not biblical and living poor does not mean freezing yourself or your mates to death! Quite why they did not invest in better heating when they had the technology is a wonder. The peasants in those little 'Black houses,' the ones where the animals have one half and you the other, would be warmer by far than the monks. Tsk!
However I have no parchment, no inks, and no talent, so I type from an awkward position, more awkward when sitting here in my bed in an effort to keep warm on the cheap! The snow has stopped, the wind has not, the cold is cold and my fingers are not as warm as they ought. But it must be said I will not complain about the situation, it could be worse, I could be English!