How to beat the Winter Blues..?

It’s never too early for advice on how to beat the winter blues, right? And it’s definitely always a treat to read & share a blog by one of my favourite people who also happens to be a writer I’m totally in awe of.

Idle blogs of an idle fellow

Yes, it’s How to Beat the Blues season again. And I don’t mean Manchester City, although they are probably the least of Crystal Palace’s worries. It’s the time of year when weekend newspapers pack away features on 10 best bikinis, Get Fit Without Lifting a Finger, Top Ten things to do in Ibiza (and two to avoid) and How To Get a Beach Body by the Time you reach it From Your Hotel, and turn instead to life beneath the heavy skies. Winter is coming.

So, in the magnanimous spirit with which Scott Wildblood set up his speculative Life Assistance Agency, whilst failing to look up assistance in the dictionary, we idly consider how we might combat those seasonal blues.

Don’t look at the internet. The first birthday greeting I got was from a German company offering me a £5 voucher after I bought a record stylus from them…

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When it snows

If I ever got married, if I was ever so inclined

To make another forever mine

I’d like it to be when it snows

Cheeks red with cold, perfect scarlet apples, breath like puffs of smoke

I’d want clouds, across the sky blown by winter wind

No sun blazing at my wedding

Imagine Rod Serling

Introducing the twilight zone

His face bathed in monochrome shades

All my photos in an album of sepia tones

Love may mingle with the snow, neatly filling the Hollow

As a tiny church nestled inside sleepy walls

Sets the scene

And completes the tableau

*This little something was inspired by the last lines in this gorgeous (and v. emotional – for me) tune*


The snow has finally heard my call and has arrived,

so pretty and dignified and white

Please, please let it settle—I plead to the powers that be—eyes full of wonder worthy of a child

The snow mantles the usually Spartan slopes,

the landscape has been transformed and made bold and beautiful

this heavenly blanket has softened all of the sharp angles

My long-awaited snow! I want to roll in it, let it freeze my extremities

feel the icy flakes melt slowly against my cheek

like the sweetest butterfly kiss
in history

*I can’t even begin to tell you how ecstatic I am that the snow has finally found its way to me. I can’t remember how long it’s been since I last saw it in this country — too damn long*

Everything that would have



you showed me your world
so different than mine
we walked for miles
under a sky much bigger
than I could ever
have dreamed
branches creaking
under the weight of snow
silence broken by sounds
of life slowed to a crawl

we went inside
my cheeks flushed from wonder
and the cold
we had a couple of whiskey
shots while you told me stories
some sad
others brought a twinkle to your eyes
I listened while your heart
was lying in the palm
of your hand
I cried a little
I laughed a lot more

of course then I didn’t know
I was the proverbial squirrel
putting it all away for a winter
still waiting in the future
one that would be harsher
than either of us could ever imagine

I reminisce about
the moments
that never took place
the memories
we never made
everything that would have
if we’d only had more time

*I over indulged Christmas Eve and again yesterday – too much alcohol, too little sleep and by 11.30pm last night, listening to the voice of my brave and so special friend in the US, I found myself breaking down and getting v.emotional. Then, straight on top of that, the news about George Michael…it was time to retreat inside my shell to process it all. Still feeling fragile today, I think I’m going to keep myself to myself for the rest of the day.*

A very simple case of Flu


It had been years since I’d last fallen prey to this.
I’d forgotten about the shivers, the hacking cough, the cold seeping right into your bones while your brain feels like a heavy burning stone, the fever engendering mad visions, lips swollen and cracked, parched, craving the coolness of spring water — feeling so weak and delirious that you ask the doctor with a slight tremor: “am I dying?”

“No, you are not dying” says he – clearly amused – he even indulges in a little chuckle.
“What we have here is a very simple case of flu.”

Simple? If I wasn’t incapacitated, I would give him a hard stare, but as it is I can barely manage to keep my eyes open.
“Simple” he says, like it’s nothing, hardly worth mentioning…while I could swear I have been lost in the fiery pits of hell during the last few days.
“Where is Asclepius when you need him?” I think… only I must have thought it out loud because the doctor chuckles again.
“Fond of Greek mythology, are we?”
I don’t have the energy to reply, even though in my usual ‘healthy’ state I would have jumped at the chance to elaborate on the subject.
I do not remember what else the doctor had to say since I kind of zoned out after that… it’s all a blank.

There’s a couple of things I am quite sure of though, now that I’m starting to see light at the end of the tunnel and (crossing fingers, touching wood, etc…) on the mend:
One: I turn into a pitiful (and petulant) human being when I’m ill.
Two: if anybody should try to be funny and suggest that maybe it wasn’t the flu but a ‘simple’ cold, I shall slowly but surely lick their face — and let my flu germs do the rest.

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