Colin Montgomery: What a bunch of snowflakes we've become

Snow? In Britain? At this time of year? The sheer effrontery of it. Anyone would think it's winter '“ it's such an unpredictable season, the way it just arrives around late November, early December every year.

Wednesday, 13th December 2017, 6:00 am
Snow needn't lead to nationwide chaos. Picture: John Devlin

What cunning I tells ya!

Yes, like clockwork, the annual pandemonium engulfs us. Planes can’t take off. Train services struggle. And a meltdown of the civic order is threatened as the UK teeters on the abyss after a bit of frozen rain has the audacity to fall vertically downwards. Forgive the tone as biting as the winter wind, but really has it come to this? One of the world’s so-called leading nations crippled by the winter? To be fair, the chief victims in this saga seem to be located south of the border and up in the Highlands, but all the same, isn’t it time to get a grip? Literally.

My brother lives in Sweden and seemingly there’s a half-hour comedy slot on Saturday nights, which simply trains a camera on the ‘chaos’ caused by the UK’s lack of preparedness for winter weather. OK, I lied about that, but they do have

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to stifle a chuckle in his office when the topic comes up. They routinely plough on through a blizzard or nine, with roads and air travel relatively unscathed. Is that a Scandic thing or is it just a bit of forward-planning? Maybe David Davies was taking time out from his busy Brexit schedule to co-ordinate our response.

I don’t do this to sneer. I just can’t help marvelling at the same old melodrama playing out every year. Of course, snow and ice can cause problems, particularly for older people who will always find winter weather a struggle. But, given

what’s just taken place in Princes Street Gardens, it’s maybe a pertinent reminder that some people have no choice but to brave the elements. Hats off then (or rather ‘on’) to Social Bite, other charities and all those who took part in the Sleep in the Park to combat homelessness across Scotland. Perhaps they could turn their organisational skills to getting the UK into shape in advance for the seasonal weather. Until then, better get that shovel.