I really dislike winter. For the last two days there was snow. Snow is always beautiful when it’s snowing and fresh. The white blanket covers the ground and doesn’t show the imperfections; the silence from the street; the walking in it and making the first imprint in the virgin whiteness.
And then it changes, as it started to do yesterday. The rain comes but it’s not warm enough to melt properly. And, because of the cars; the pollution; the number of people – the snow turns to ice and/or slush. Dirty brown ice or slush. Sure, there is still the snow that is still white. But not virginal – there are imprints already there.
The worst thing here is that when there is a lot of water (usually because of the rain) there don’t seem to be enough drainage points in the streets and on the roads and so, inevitably, the water collects in huge pools.
After snow here, in Milan, the worst places for this sudden appearance of pools of deep water is at the edge of pavements. Worse than that is that these are not easy to spot, especially when it is dark and you only have the street lamps for illumination.
Therefore, every journey by foot is more like an assault course. First there is the deep snow (where it remains deep) to contend with; then the ice – thick ice, formed by many people walking in the same place and compacting the snow and it melts but only a little; then, when you forget or cannot see clearly, the great and deep pools of water at the crossing points at the edge of the pavement.
So, last night, whilst taking the dogs for their long walk, I stepped (sometimes without choice, sometimes without having seen) in some of these pools, some of which were deep enough for them to come over my walking boots and, after enough of these, some water got in and made my feet wet. Grrr.
I really hate the winter.