I hate winter.
The rot set in at boarding school. After a childhood of open fires and a kitchen range, the gothic austerity of mens sana in corpore sano at temperatures hovering either side of 0o Celsius was a shock from which neither my system nor my psyche ever recovered.
The classrooms were heated – lest the ink froze in our pens, presumably – but a gesture to comfort in the cavernous dining hall only kept distant ceiling beams warm enough to weep condensation onto the tundra below, where we sat warming chilblained fingers on our bowls of lumpy porridge. And as for the dormitories… Nothing but the wind whistling up between the floorboards to lift the meagre mats, and frost coating the single glazing of a glassed-in veranda. Hot water bottles were permitted, but filling them meant risking detention by skipping supper to get there before the hot water ran out.
You think I’m exaggerating, but I bear the scars to prove that every word is true. Glorious autumn days are wasted – I know they mean winter is coming – and by now – early spring – my spirits are flat enough to need CPR.
And then he tried to hit me with a forklift.