As will possibly surprise nobody but myself, I didn’t make it to Glasgow today. Perhaps having someone from your very own coonsil on the Today Programme explaining why they’d effectively told everyone not to attempt to go anywhere at all overnight might have been the clue – that and the additional few inches of snow that meant we weren’t going to get the car out in time for me to catch the morning train – and even if we did, there was no guarantee that the other half would be able to get in again to meet the 10pm train back once the temperatures had dropped and the next yellow warning had rolled around.
By mid morning, indeed, the only vehicle that had attempted to get up our hill was the BT van which had ignominiously ground to a halt half way up (‘it was stopping to look at the telegraph pole that did it’, according to the driver; I imagine it’s an occupational hazard) and then slid back down again. We could see that the main road was moving okay so, with the sun briefly out, and a newspaper to fetch, I kitted up the bike with the second spiked tyre and wheeled it down to the main road to give it a go.
Actually, once up and running it wasn’t too bad – slushy rather than icy, and I could probably have got away with ordinary tyres. I considered staying on the main road all the way down, but after a close-ish pass from a bin lorry, of all things, I decided to take my chances on the back roads, where not everyone had been so lucky.
(The advantage of being on a bike is that when you are on your way back and the rescue lorry has arrived and is blocking the road and there are four men just standing around having a blether about how it all happened and what to do now, a bike can just slip through the gap and get past)
Plus it was lovely to be out – and even lovelier to get back just as the next snow shower rolled in.