>It’s (S)no(w) joke!

>

Is anyone else getting a tad fed up with the excuses from the government and local councils about being unprepared in this country for snow or is it just me? Not to mention having to take a days holiday if you get snowed in and can’t get to work!

The idea that we don’t suffer from extreme weather in this country is getting more and more ridiculous by the day, it was only in February last year that the same thing happened, plus just before this Christmas and again at the start of the New Year. We apparently knew it was coming, so why are we not better prepared for it? Yes I know that this isn’t Russia or Iceland etc and therefore we aren’t used to coping with it and don’t at present have the measures in place to deal with it and yes it is expensive to put in place the tools to deal with the issue when it does happen, but if it’s such a one off occurance then surely it wont cost us that much?

Don’t get me wrong I love snow, having snowball fights with E (she’s in the pic above by the way, and no the massive house behind her isn’t mine – I wish!) building snowmen and watching her do snow angels in the park etc, it’s just I hate driving in it and I resent the fact that everything shuts down with a bit of snow on the ground.

We originally got it back in December down here in Kent and although not very deep, because of the freezing temperatures it turned to ice and created treacherous driving conditions – not to mention how dangerous it was walking on the pavements either! (and for someone who has a really dodgey back falling over is one of my main concerns in this weather because I quite simply won’t get back up again!) I was on annual leave back in December so it was great for me, although made trying to get all the food in for Christmas a bit of a nightmare, although my office moved on the 23rd so I was informed I HAD to drive there and pack my desk into these huge cartons so they could be moved over to the new office. So I braved the ice on the roads, only to be told they had used all the crates when I turned up – I’d rung them half an hour before leaving and was told to come in so as you can imagine I wasn’t impressed.

It was back to school and work on the 5th of January and that’s when it started – again! A full covering of snow from about 9pm onwards that night. I struggled into work the following day, a 15 minute journey taking me an hour and had to listen to my bosses moan about my colleagues (while sympathising with others – favouritism doesnt work quite as well in an open plan office, they just havent worked this out themselves quite yet!) who hadnt made it in or were getting lifts because they werent confident driving in the snow. One boss in particular made such a big thing about how “ridiculous” it was that my colleagues weren’t coming into work, funny how the following day she herself couln’t get in – made even more entertaining by the fact that even though it took me an hour and a half I still made it in and she lives all of two minutes from my home!

On the subject of work, I am really quite annoyed that people who can’t get in (except the teachers pets and said boss of course!) are being forced to take their days off due to not being able to get in through the snow as annual leave! How is that annual leave? Yes it’s unfair on employers that people should be paid while they are off work because they simply can’t get there, it’s not the employers fault, but it’s equally not the employees fault either – maybe it’s time that employees put pressure on their bosses to make their feelings known. If the government aren’t going to ensure that this disruption doesnt happen again, then they should foot the wages bill and employees keep their precious annual leave.

E’s school has been closed for the last two days, and yet again this is an inconvenience because it means if I can’t get childcare at the last minute, I can’t go to work – again not my fault and again I am expected to take annual leave when it isn’t annual leave!

I understand some schools are shut because there aren’t enough staff there to cover the amount of children that can get in, but some close for health and safety reasons. Now while I don’t want anyone falling over and hurting themselves in the snow (including me as not only have I got a dodgey back but I’m also well known as increadibly clumsy!) but when I was at school (now that makes me feel old just using that phrase), a bit of snow didnt shut down an entire school!

Our school never closed, despite a few feet of snow on some occasions and we certainly weren’t kept inside or anything like that, we were left outside in the snow while we pressed our faces up against the steamed up staff room window watching the teachers who seemed lovely and warm while downing their coffees and making full use of the central heating! Although we were cold and a bit jealous of the “evil” teachers for keeping us outside, nothing bad happened to us, we didn’t get hypothermia, we ran around throwing snowballs at each other (usually boys against girls), building snowmen and having a whale of a time, so within reason why can’t our children be treated the same?

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