Taking Stock - January 4, 2016

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Greetings from the shores of Lake Thornton.

Granted, it’s less exotic than Cambodia’s Tonle Sap and not quite as exclusive as Italy’s Lake Garda.

It’ll never be as big as Lake Michigan nor as high (or hilariously named) as Lake Titicaca, but I’m growing to enjoy my new waterfront abode.

Come spring it would be nice to have the playing fields back – somewhere to walk the dog when the jobsworth parkies aren’t enforcing non-existent laws and a place for the children to play once North Fylde’s budget Sandcastle has dried out.

At least out here on the coast we can make light of the December downpour, even if I did spend much of Christmas week watching the water creep closer to my front door.

The same cannot be said for the hardy folk of St Michaels, the Lake District, East Lancashire and beyond who have at best been forced out of their homes as what should be a joyous time of year and in the worst case have lost nearly everything.

Thankfully we Brits have retained at least a little of the stoicism and practicality which one turned half the map of the world pink.

The response was stunning, from Carlisle United’s footballers pitching in to clear up homes at the start of the month to a Rugby League legend rushing to the aid of the good people of Yorkshire.

Hopefully the New Year will bring some weather which is a little more, well, normal. It’s not just been wet, it’s been remarkable warm – confusingly warm in the vast expanses of the gardens at Stocks Towers. January may barely be here but already the Daffodils are showing, breaking through the soil amid the remnants of the fence.

It just goes to show how daft the traditional images of festive snow and ice on the magic lantern can be.

In fact I’m considering a holiday in seach of real winter weather. Siberia, Iceland... Whitby – somewhere the temperature never gets above minus ten. When I’m back, maybe the grass will be too.