We woke up yesterday to find that he'd drooped, further establishing his phallic status:
Deep snow is, of course, a relatively rare occurrence in the south of the UK. In the last few years, from memory, I'd say it snows on average once or twice a year, and it's usually only a couple of inches deep and sticks around for a maximum of two days.
The recent snow was a little deeper than we would ordinarily experience - half a foot perhaps? - and came much earlier in the winter than usual. As adults, we're all just about resigned to the idea that white Christmases don't happen in England.
Once you understand this, it doesn't seem so preposterous that we are always so unprepared for snowfall. Opinion seems to be divided between 'it happens regularly, so it shouldn't be such a surprise' to 'it's reasonable not to divert public funds to tackle something which happens so rarely'. At the moment, Twitter's Brightonians are FURIOUS that the council have not gritted any residential or side-roads, and are able to vent that fury not only in public, but direct to @BrightonHoveCC. There really is quite a froth.
Thing is, I don't know how much of it is based on the truth. I saw the grit trucks on Friday night, gritting Islingword Road (a residential street) and there is also grit on the less significant Dawson Terrace, near us. Perhaps the council is short of grit, because other parallel roads have been left icy - not a problem if you know which one to go down.
Our own pavement was an absolute ice-rink yesterday and today (it's started raining now, however). For the future, I'll know that as soon as the snow falls, I should get out and dig a path.
As for Twitter, I'm beginning to see that there is a fine line between the excellence and novelty of having a direct line to those in charge, and (as in those 'have your say' portions of newspaper websites) the opportunity for the slightest gripe to sweep the community.
Item, who still felt ill this morning (but who is now wandering round finding any opportunity to whinge, which I assume means she is on the mend) seems to know what her body wants. She sent me out this morning for dry cream crackers and has since requested a yoghurt and a vitamin. On the way out to the shop, I saw that our neighbours had added a picture to our shared entranceway:
That's me, The Boy and Item getting snow off a car, and their daughter Nina having a snowfight with us, taken from their living room window. It made me laugh in surprise when I saw it.
Item is collecting questions to send to 'Nina and her neurons', a CBeebies programme where they experiment to see things like how kettles work, or why ice melts. Normally, her questions are quite suitable, such as 'why do cats have whiskers?' and 'how do bath bombs work?' but today, her question is 'why is granddad always at the station when we get off the train?'. I think Nina might scratch her head a little bit over that one.