Monday 19 October 2009

His Royal Highness

Winter has arrived. I don't need to read the weather forecasts to know this. I feel it in my bones. In my finger bones in particular. That's not some strange physical quirk on my part, and I don't get cold feet in the night either. It's just that when I'm on the motorbike, the cold gets through. Doesn't matter what I do, I freeze. And the leaves haven't even fallen yet. In most places they're still green, although Epping Forest is beginning to turn brown, orange and golden yellow. It's a beautiful place to walk your dog. I wish I had a dog.

But at least it's warm in the cottage (inspite of British Gas declaring war on my boiler and decreeing it defunct and the sole cause of global warming). For the boy, though, he's not had that warmth this weekend. He's been away on is Duke of Edinburgh Award hike, sleeping under canvas. He's back tonight, and hopefully not encased in a block of ice, like Scrat. I'm looking forward to it in eager anticipation of being subjected to a non-stop barrage of tales of daring and adventure from arrival until bedtime, and then again at breakfast tomorrow...and for the following days, weeks and months thereafter.

This weekend appears to be the weekend for everyone to do their DoE...I've seen numerous bedraggled pictures of friends' offspring on Facebook. In my day, it was the few and not the many that made the sacrifice. But these days, it seems a basic qualification for life. The boy appears to enjoy it - he's also doing cycling down at the local club, and helping out at the Drama Club. So his evenings and weekends are pretty full, even before the rigours of homework, and putting his socks in the wash basket.

I hope the Duke is proud of what the youth do in his name.


  1. Good luck to him! I did Duke of Edinburgh when I was at school - but we did it in the summer (and that was cold enough). We did the final walk in Germany, and almost failed for plotting our walking route on lines which turned out to be rivers, not roads.....

  2. My youngest daughter did her Bronze trip in the spring (she couldn't do the fall trip as she wasn't yet 14) in Algonquin Park (Ontario/Canada).

    I heard not just about the wicked canoeing but a great deal of moaning about being eaten alive by black flies. Early June is the absolute worst time for bugs in the woods and lakes there. She still had a marvelous time and was very proud of herself. I hope your son had some fun adventures as well!

  3. Let's hope he receives a Knighthood :) TFx


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