Friday, March 5, 2010

Weather and critters

The English, they say (and who "they" are, I've never known) are a nation of moaners. Our Australian friends don't call us "whinging Poms" for nothing.

As Stuart says, "the English have a God-given right to complain". Hmm, I sort of agree with him and certainly "The Weather" is one subject that we do comment and usually complain about. It's too wet, it's too cold, it's too hot, it's too windy, etc.

One of the many considerations we gave to moving to Andalusia was that following retirement and spending time out of an office/factory environment, it struck me just how grey (gray) and overcast most days seemed. Even during the summer and the temperatures were obviously warmer, clear, "wall-to-wall" sun days seemed rare.

Of course, Andalusia has a share of them too, and the Costa del Sol is known for it's windy days. The climate - lack of wind (generally) and the Carolina blue skies and plenty of sun, even during the winter, attracted us to the Old North State.

The English are not alone in making "The Weather" a frequent topic of conversation. It happens here too folks. There is an excellent forecasting service throughout the media - one of our local TV news channels has detailed forecasts every ten minutes.

What's all this got to do with "moaning"? Okay, I'm ready for Spring and warmer weather. This has been, without doubt, the coldest winter we've spent since leaving England. Whilst I usually enjoy the four seasons, temperatures here have generally been considerably lower than normal, and I'm now ready for warmer days. We have forecasts of a warm-up next week - 65 on Thursday. Bring it on! Bring on the 80s too! And when we are sitting on the porch during the 90s, yes, you've guessed it - I'll be moaning about the heat!

The critters? We have a yard full of wildlife with many species of birds. They give us so much pleasure throughout the year that we repay them by making sure that they are well fed and watered during the winter. We have managed to keep most of our feeders "squirrel-free" - except for one. It's a clear plastic one which fixes via suction cups to a window. We have tried fixing it to different windows, but however successful we think we are, dear little "Squirrel Nutkins" manages to find a way to reach it, knock it off the hooks thus spilling the food for him and his bushy-tailed friends to feed at leisure on the ground.

I can't help admire his ingenuity, but I'm sure this cheeky little critter would try the patience of Saint Francis himself!

The battle continues.

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