With Christmas looming ever closer, this weekend took it upon itself to remind me in as forceful a manner as it could that it is November and it is winter and we should be grown up about this and act accordingly. Foolish notions of running around in the woods should be cast aside in favour of indoor activities where there is heating or at the very least you are not being subjected to a continuous enslaught of rain and sleet.
Yes, this weekend I was walking around Shining Cliffs attempting to save the world as always in the last Ascendancy event of the year. Saturday was OK, cold but dry other than the occasional sleet shower. My feet were numb but I was well wrapped up and coped admirably, whilst watching in horror as one particular participant walked around the freezing woods in bare feet!!!
Sunday morning we awoke to wind, rain and sleet slamming into the windows, at which point a sensible reluctance to go outside took hold. Unfortunately, the other players didn't share that reluctance (possibly because they were in Birmingham and hadn't arrived on the scene so hadn't witnessed how bad it was) and so off we went to share in the madness.
Personally I was already cold by the time we'd stood waiting for the other players to arrive and my toes were lost to me... So I abandoned the car because it was better to walk back and forth in the sleet, because at least that way I could keep the circulation going. We finally got going but those of us of a non-combative nature hadn't a chance of staying warm out there.
I wasn't doing too badly since I was kitted out from head to foot in wool, but while wool is excellent at insulating you even when soaked through it does get incredibly heavy as it soaks up all that moisture. Queue aching shoulders and back as I trudged around after everyone else. The main problem though was my hands and feet, my boots were water proof but offered no insulation against the freezing ground while my leather gloves soaked up the rain like a chamois.
Suffice it to say there was no argument from me when it was finally suggested we retire to an indoor venue. In fact, had things gone on much longer mutiny was in the air as I was on the verge of asking Richard for the car keys and leaving them to it. The only thing stopping me was the thought of sitting in wet clothes in a freezing car for hours on end while the others carried on with the game.
The indoor venue was Andy and Heather's shop where there was tea and heat and a toilet (much needed after all that freezing cold sleet). I'm not sure what their customers thought of all these strangely dressed people descending on them, but at that point all I wanted was to be warm.
A short while after we'd retired indoors it began to snow.
Timing is everything and all I can say is hooray for being indoors at that point!
Anyhow, I survived. The journey home was interesting in a hair raising kind of way as I drove through the snow and was buffeted by wind all the way. I was very relieved to get home safe and sound and my first priority was a long soak in a hot bath.
Not the best weekend really, but the company was good (as always) which saved things some what. Now I'm just wondering what the weather will be like in January when I'm due to do it all again. Blankets and hot water bottles may well be a must!