Tuesday, 17 December 2013


There has been much whipping-up of winter gales here recently. The wind roars and strikes with a whining fury from a racing tempestuous sky. The clouds hurl over, low, thick and furious and rain is lashed from them in torrential streams. The landscape has been once again changed, there is complete barrenness as the last leaves are stripped - the sound is very much like the sea, glorious and relentless. I wait patiently for a respite and the chance to make a quick 10 mile dash.

It came yesterday as I enjoyed a day off from work; the chance to wrap some Christmas presents, catch up with some much needed housekeeping and organising. All morning the rain battered my office at home and my constant monitoring through the window did nothing to help. But then a brief pause and a brighter, calmer spell saw me leap into action. A quick change and I was out on the road. The wind was still fierce enough to chill me through - even though I was well layered,  but half a mile of sustained effort an I was acclimatised and feeling more comfortable. I rode 14 miles and got back feeling as though I had ridden 40.

The thing about being out in the cold is that make you hungry - the last few miles towards home are fired by the prospect of a steaming mug of something along with cake or biscuits. Today biscuits seem to fit. I recall watching something about biscuits recently - the programme showed one of the forefathers of the modern biscuit - a ships biscuit, so hard it needed to be smashed with a cannonball to be eaten - it might be ripe for a modern makeover - Ideal for the busy, health-consious executive looking to combine eating with exercise - this nutritious snack that must first be defeated in hand-to-hand combat. According to the programme biscuits were Admiral Nelson's secret weapon and it's a bracing and patriotic thought to imagine HMA Victory bombarding Napoleon's warships with a barrage of sponge fingers. Then there's the rusk - described as 'breast milk in biscuit form' - an interesting metaphor but perhaps the way forward for McVitie's newest and edgiest bestseller? There were people on the programme who remembered where they were when they first learned of the existence of Chocolate Hob-Nobs - standing on the grassy knoll perhaps?

Fired up with biscuity imagery I brew up and crack open my favourites - Ginger Nuts, which must be carefully dunked to the point of disintegration - a skill that takes practise but results in sublime satisfaction. Custard Cream anyone?

No comments:

Post a Comment