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Yet another stormy day!  How many have we had since the end of October?  I have lost count now.  R and I were talking about this this morning before he went off to work.  Here in East Anglia we have been much more fortunate than others around the country and on the near continent, but even here many have had property lost or damaged.  The news of the surge tide at the beginning of December, when a number of people lost their homes, was overwhelmed by that of Nelson Mandela’s death.

  I am feeling so sorry for everyone trying to deal with the floods, whether it is home owners, farmers, people whose businesses have suffered through flooding or not being able to get the stock or customers they need, people who have lost relatives by drowning, the officials (flood wardens, ministers, members of the Environment Agency), members of the emergency services, the police, the army – I could go on.  My sister, who is a paramedic working in Kent, tells me many people will not help themselves and/or won’t take advice they are given to move out of their property in good time, and then expect to be rescued afterwards by her fellow workers wading chest deep in sewage!

I took my mother out shopping earlier and was pleased that we were able to get it all done before the rain came and the wind really picked up.  She is quite frail now and finds it difficult keeping upright in windy weather.  It was raining hard by the time I got home.  I had some lunch and then went out to feed the birds and check that all was secure around the garden.  I was soaked through by the time I got back in the house.  I obviously wasted £12 on the reproofing spray I put on my coat the other week.  It will all have to be done again. 

I have just seen my bird table blow over! 

I dread the power going off, especially in the winter.  Fortunately, this doesn’t happen here as often as it used to up to ten years ago.  We have butane gas (we are not on the gas main here) and have gas central heating and a gas hob.  Obviously the heating doesn’t work in a power cut so we have a portable gas heater and a gas fire in our living room.  We also have a carbon monoxide alarm in our living room!  We have some good torches and all members of the family keep one next to their beds in case of emergency.  With cloud covering the moon and stars it can be extremely dark at night here.  We also have a few lamps, some better than others, and candles.  But don’t we all rely on electricity being there all the time!  Isn’t life difficult without it?  And boring!  And cold!!

Listening to the wind buffeting the house and howling down the chimney makes me glad I am inside, warm and dry.  I am very lucky.