Back in November, some of the less scrupulous newspapers in the UK were full of dire warnings of a new Ice Age, with a long and bitter winter ahead.
So far, as it turns out, it has been one of the mildest winters on record here, with maximum temperatures often as high as 14˚C (57˚F), and sometimes even a little warmer than some of the cool days we had back in the summer. But being that time of year, I thought that I had better show you some photos which I took five years ago, to demonstrate that even the Isle of Wight can look seasonal.
Here are local fields, to the north of Saint Boniface Down, just inland from Ventnor.
This is Appuldurcombe House, the remains of a once-grand stately home, which is just a couple of fields away from us.
This is a spectacular stag-headed tree which still comes into leaf each year. It is one of the few surviving ancient trees from what was a deer-park surrounding Appuldurcombe House.
The weather theme for this winter, though, has been wind, which is notoriously hard to portray in any still image. I will leave it to Alfred Sisley, who died almost 116 years ago, to express that better than I can. Happy holidays!