The year has started as 2013 left off, with heavy rain, gales, massive seas and flooding across the country. Coastal towns all round Britain have been battered, and I use that word literally, by rocks and debris hurled up by huge waves. Even here in beautiful Ruislip we have already had most of a normal January's rainfall. It's been fairly mild, fortunately. Meanwhile unprecedented cold conditions prevail in North America where Arctic air is pushing down as far as Texas and the remants of that blast are on their way to us.
So I've been bailing out the little pond in the back garden as a way of keeping the water levels down generally (because water drains into it from the surrounding bricks) and sweeping water off the patio to prevent the buildup of a sort of lagoon; the last thing we want is to have mosquitos breeding in the warm,wet conditions. The thick London clay on which much of Middlesex stands makes for poor drainage so it's lucky (for us) that we live relatively high above the Thames flood plain (and right now that plain is well and truly flooded and overspilling into places like Chertsey and Oxford).
I've always disliked Wellington boots because they give poor support to the feet but maybe the time has come to invest in a cheap pair - of course, the moment I do it will all dry up, there will be a drought, empty reservoirs, farmers holding withered crops and the inevitable hosepipe ban. You can't win, you know.