My goodness, winter here is serious business! Some may say; ‘what do we know, you have not even been here for a full winter”, or “what are you talking about, this is nothing compared to …”
Not that it is just cold, it is the cold and wet! During the past ten days we had three mornings with the temperature well below zero and we had almost 50mm of rain over a period of four days.
A good friend once said to me that there are two things that he never complains about, one is the food (a story for another time), and the other is the weather. There is nothing we can do about the weather and complaining about it will serve absolutely no purpose and will not change anything.
So please believe me, I am not complaining about the weather, just commenting on it. Normally I like the cold weather, dressing up warmly, long winter nights, log fires, electric blanket, down duvet, cuddling and then there is the winter food; soup, stew and hot puddings.
Isn’t it odd that we often look at winter as the season to survive until next summer? Almost as if winter is the space between summers, an unnecessary gap in our year of summer fun. But if we stop to think about it, most will agree that winter is an important season in the circle of life. Plants, animals, insects, micro-organisms, even the soil and oceans need the winter.
Just like we do with winter, we also view hardship and heartache, pain and suffering, troubles and worries as something that we just want to end, to be over with, and to be behind us. It causes a break in our happiness or wellbeing and we would like it to be finished.
I am reminded of a verse in the Bible that talks about this need for the winter in our lives. “…let us exult and triumph in our troubles and rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that affliction and hardship produce patient and unswerving endurance. And endurance develops maturity of character…
The winter in our lives as well as the winter season are both vital; although it might be uncomfortable, it makes us stronger, prepares us for the summer, resets our clocks and provides the rest for the growth to come.
While we are experiencing the start of our first winter at Over the Mountain, Hansie (our gardener) started pruning the roses (there must be more than a hundred bushes), we even prepared some of the cuttings as new rose plants.
Very importantly, all our guests are treated with lovely warm and comfortable rooms, hot water bottles in bed and log fires in the lounge. Not to speak of the delicious home cooked meals for the lucky guests that book with us.