Has spring sprung a trap?

Lynne can always resort to her Vera Hat if the weather gets cold again. Picture; LJM

Lynne can always resort to her Vera Hat if the weather gets cold again. Picture; LJM - Credit: Archant

What should we do? Put away the winter clothes and dig out the flip flops or ignore the weather and stick with the thermals?

I’m a bit worried.

I’ve taken my vest off and it’s only the beginning of March.

The thermal vest goes on in November and usually comes off in April. I do have more than one, by the way, that was just a turn of phrase. But it has been so warm I have been seduced into thinking it’s spring and so have discarded a layer of clothes. Now I am concerned I may suffer for it if we get a sudden cold snap. Yes, I know I could always put the vest on again but I like to think that once it’s off, it’s off.

Ah, well, sometimes you just have to live dangerously and I did have the flu jab. I can always wear my Vera Hat (see picture), the one that makes me look like the lead character in the ITV murder mystery series, that stars Brenda Blethyn. It keeps my head warm and dry but makes me look a proper frump.

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My husband too has been celebrating the unusual February spring. He has been out in the garden and has taken down the spiraea that was getting straggly, weeded out some of the violets that, given half a chance, would take over the flower beds entirely, and cleared the stone circle.

Ah, that makes it sound as if we have a stone henge in the garden. It is simply a circle of paving slabs with a stone bench that sits in the sunniest south-westerly corner of the back garden. The idea was that we could sit there with a pre-prandial g&t and enjoy the evening sun... but we never do.

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The unseasonably warm weather beguiled us all. My cousin had his first barbecue of the year on February 27. The other day, when I arrived home from work, my husband was washing the car*. Happy birthday, car.

So, I ask again, is winter over? (No, Ed)

Lynne taking off her vest is not recognised as one of nature’s signs that spring is here. The birds, however are getting distinctly twitterpated (© Disney Corporation, Bambi). Only this morning I watched a wood pigeon doing his cooing and bowing, let’s-mate thing on the garden wall, while the object of his passion looked at him with disdain before flying off. Even in the avian kingdom it isn’t easy being a bloke, is it?

The East Anglian days have been glorious but the nights are still cold... especially when the person you sleep with hogs the duvet. Sorry, love.

It’s not my fault, it’s the bed. It’s too small. Nearly everyone else seems to have at least a king size bed, these days. Ours is a conventional 4’ 6” double and, although we are the same size as we have been since the 90s (rather too big but can still see feet when standing) I do love the idea of being able to fling out my arm without injuring my husband. It isn’t something I do wakefully, it’s just that my sleep pattern seems to include more aerobic exercise these days. When I do wake up, I’m often wearing the duvet like a Sumo wrestler’s loin cloth while my husband lies shivering under a tiny corner of the cover.

One of the best things about staying in hotels is big beds. The biggest one we ever slept in was, I think, in New York. It measured 7ft and as we drifted off to sleep we held hands to reassure one another we were both still there.

When we first married we had a wartime utility bed with a metal frame. It measured 4ft and squeaked. Our first new bed was bought when we moved house. It was a double divan with drawers that we could never use because they fell apart. Now we have a sturdy wooden frame with an extraordinarily heavy mattress. But it may be time for a change, particularly as baby Herbie (who will be one year old this month) takes up rather more than his fair share of the bed (70%) when, as is his wont, he sleeps with us.

* My husband wishes me to point out that he has already washed the car twice, this year.

We have been looking for a holiday cottage to rent on the North Norfolk coast in August. My goodness they book up quickly, don’t they? Even the ones that look as if they are modern houses on estates have already been snapped up.

Meanwhile the ones that sleep 27 and come with a hunting lodge are too pricey.

Then there are the ones that claim to be near to the coast... which they probably are if you live in Oxford. As I live only 12 miles from the coast I was really hoping for somewhere much closer to the sea. Anyway, we have a couple in mind – one of which has a USP of being very near a pub ? and we may commit soon... if we’re not already too late.

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