Whilst preparing a small flask of tea in our kitchen on Monday morning it was bright enough for me to give the light switch a miss, it looked calm and warm outside. From that window I was lulled into a false sense of non-frozenness which meant that I wasn't expecting the winter scene or the clod blast of air that awaited me as I opened the front door. Never much of a morning person and out of the door a little earlier than usual, the sudden face-freeze was a wake up call that I hadn't anticipated. The bright white lawn and white peppered sky took me by surprise. Oddly though, not a bad surprise, it was quite a pleasant surprise, the crisp chilled air shocked my senses out of their sleep hangover like a splash of cold water and for once I felt quite awake. My brain shouted 'WINTER!' and as always on such occasions my hands reached into my pocket to grab my camera so I could share so here is our grass-weed-lawn with a dusting of frost:
I quickly walked to the bus stop where I noticed the Moon was still out and playing hide and seek with me, hiding behind and re-appearing from the fast moving clouds in an ocean-like sky.
On the bus everything was chilled to the touch. Using the rails to climb the stairs to the upper deck was what I imagine it would be like to use a zimmer frame outside in the Alps.
The bus was as cold as the air outside, cold enough to see your breath in the air and to feel the chill from the upholstered seat through your trousers and underwear.
I held my flask through the plastic bag to keep it upright due to its time outside it too was a lot colder than my hand to the point I actually thought it was wet and had leaked through the bag.
Heading into Belfast the scene out of the window of the bus was certainly that of winter. The Sun was low in the sky engulfing passengers in an orange aura, anything in shadow was still dusted with frost. The vents from large buildings had visible white plumes of water vapour rising from them, making the city look like it was still running on coal and wood burning fires like it had gone back in time or turned into a power station for the day.
I stepped off the bus and paid the usual visits to shops to pick up some food for lunch. The air-conditioning of the shops a nice relief even though I was wearing 2 layers and a coat.
Once supplies had been obtained I headed to work but took a few seconds out to stop by the River Lagan down by the Waterfront. There the sun was peeking out from behind a building, mildly glaring like a sunrise...
... , reflecting off the shiny exterior of the Obel building back across the water...
and planes having just taken off from Belfast City Airport were ploughing splashing through the white waves in the sky...
It was freezing but pretty. Rather than finally obtain some gloves and staying out in the crisp air longer taking pictures, I eventually had to focus on getting to work. Winter was certainly giving us a wake up call and a reminder that it'll be here soon enough. Time for me to re-find those hats, scarves and gloves that must be buried under several layers of household junk... brrrrrrrrrrrr.