It’s snowing…

Fantastic. But can someone tell me why I can get the Guardian, Daily Telegraph and the FT, but none of the local papers have made it as far as East Belfast? Photo from Gary at the NI Flickr Group!!

  • Paul

    I wonder how many people in the East blame the IRA for that … 😉

  • Philip Jenkinson

    Took me 5 hours to get from Newry to Craigavon via Lisburn, car heater broke also (:

  • Has R J Tinsley of Dromore, Co Down, dropped his Y (fronts) for the Christmas season?

  • LOST best TV show ever

    Sat Nav problems?

  • willowfield

    But can someone tell me why I can get the Guardian, Daily Telegraph and the FT, but none of the local papers have made it as far as East Belfast?

    My guess would be because the nationals were flown in last night whereas the locals only get delivered in the morning. By morning time the roads were harder to traverse than last night.

  • willowfield

    Incidentally, that should be “none of the local papers has made it as far as East Belfast” (not sure about the need for a capital “e” in “east”, either).

  • DC

    Not more pedantic semantic policing.

  • willowfield

    Someone has to promote standards.

  • Nestor Makhno

    It’s definitely have Willowfield – standards slipping?

    On another topic. Translink’s response to to a few inches of snow: their website has been down all morning and no one is answering their phones. Very useful on a day when bus services are only intermittent.

  • willowfield

    It’s definitely have Willowfield …

    It’s not. On the contrary, it’s definitely “has”. “None” is singular.

    – standards slipping?

    Not on my part.

  • steve

    As a Canadian I can only say

    Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow! As long it snows there and not here LOL

  • Doreen

    I agree with Willowfield. None is a contraction of not one, and nobody would say “none have”.

  • Harry Flashman

    Yup, none takes a singular verb, “not one”.

  • I would use “has”. I would also tend to use the lower case ‘e’ in ‘east Belfast’.

  • Valenciano

    It’s kind of amusing that whenever a bit of bad weather hits the streets in the UK everything stops and it’s headline news. Here people don’t blink and just get on with it. I just got home after a 40 minute walk and outside it’s 10°F / -12°C. Count your blessings!

  • Animus

    There is no need for a capital E, but it’s not strictly incorrect either. I try not to discuss the area myself in polite company though so this dilemma doesn’t arise often. (just kidding – please don’t flame me).

    Oddly in my part of town, we did get the Guardian this morning, but two mornings earlier in the week, we didn’t. Hmmmm.

    Bad weather – snow tires – gravel – warm enough clothes = chaos. Incidentally, every time there is bad weather, some wit always points out that in other countries they get on with it.

  • Harry Flashman

    *Incidentally, every time there is bad weather, some wit always points out that in other countries they get on with it.*

    To quote that great intellectual, Jeremy Clarkson:

    “British severe weather is like British severe poverty, a fairly limp-wristed affair when placed in a global context”

  • steve

    LOL excelent quote Harry

  • joeCanuck

    I was in a little town in south west Ireland a few years ago and went to the newsagent and asked for a copy of the Times. After some discussion on whether I wanted the London or Irish times, the newsagent asked me if I wanted today’s paper or yesterday’s. I said “Today’s”. In that case, he said, you’ll have to come back tomorrow.

  • Twinbrook resident

    after trying unsuccessfully to dig my car out today and that allied with the fact it took me three hours to travel two miles last night…
    I had the misfortune to hear a representative from the Road services on Radio5 this morning proudly informing US that all the main routes were open and had been clear for hours!!!
    Which Planet do this faceless bureaucrats live on!

  • DC

    “Which Planet do this faceless bureaucrats live on!”

    Planet ‘leafy suburbs of the well-gritted Belfast conurbation’

    Very funny Irish situation there Joe, quintessentially old-Irish at its best.

  • snowjoke

    The folks back home in Ireland always bring a smile to me when there are a couple of cms of snow or the temp dips below 0C. (Originally I am from County Antrim).

    I live in Canada, in Ontario, and this week has been fairly typical. Yesterday morning left the house in a -31C windchill (-24C actual). Snow on the ground so far this year about 160cm. Driveway at home has snow banks from snow blower of about 4.5 feet.

    Yet the drive to work is normal since we have fleets of snow clearance vehicles out all night, and the airport is open with de-icing stations applied as necessary.

    Snow happens in winter. You do get used to it. See http://nyc.metblogs.com/archives/images/2006/02/02.06%20snowstorm_cars.JPG for real snow.

  • URQUHART

    I thought you were dead.

  • steve

    How much snow did you actually get

  • Dr Strangelove

    Looks like I made my escape just in time… flew out from the City airport on Wednesday in good weather.. checked the local news today and it appears chaos has descended. Ironically, a lot of the Christmas conversation was taken up with just how mild the weather had been.

    It was the same deal during last summer, was back at the start of June and the weather was in the mid 20s for a week. Two days after leaving biblical rain leaves the place flooded.

    Then I could understand why east belfast ground to a halt because the local punters could not get to the chippy, off license, video shop, and bookies etc. Hopefully the snow has not affected access to these essential services for the natives

  • Twinbrook resident

    when the Roads service actually awake and come back down to Planet reality maybe, just maybe, they`ll blame all their obvious failings(again) on the wrong type of snow, the darned weather not obeying the laws of nature and melting under the vast amounts of salt and grit applied, little three eyed men from Mars and even the unthinkable…

    we messed up!

  • willowfield

    Twinbrook, I don’t think it’s feasible for the Roads Service to grit or plough every road.

  • Twinbrook resident

    willowfield..
    was hoping for foresight and some organisational ability on the part of the Roads service, maybe thats too much…
    sure its Winter and severe weather was forecast for Scotland and the North of England but the Irish seas thousaaaaaands of miles wide!

  • Animus

    Yeah, but severe winter weather wasn’t forecast. A sprinkling of snow was forecast followed by rain. Instead we got several inches of snow and rain only started later on. I know the Roads Service can be slow, but you can’t expect them to be clairvoyant, Twinbrook.

  • Snowed Under

    Willowfield,

    I take your point that Roads Service can’t grit every road etc and thats a fair and understandable point.

    But watching UTV News at 6pm I was shouting at the TV as the Deputy Chief Whoever Ye Call Em of Roads Service basically blamed the Met Office.

    Come on Roads Service, you wern’t caught on the hop that much, we knew snow was coming since Tuesday so the question must be asked again…

    When civil servants simply get it wrong and make a mistake why can’t they just admit to it?

  • Eddie

    I’m fed up with people from (or who have gone to) North America going on about how much snow they have and how much better they put up with it than we do etc etc. They have more compensations than we have. FFS, can we not have a good moan when we feel like it? Makes up feel better. Would you deny us that? Anyway, why did you go to North America in the first place?

    Also, yes, it’s capital N for the North in North America, and capital E for the E in East Belfast. If you’re going to insist on “east Belfast” (see earlier comments) then you’ll also have to speak of north Antrim (Paisley’s constituency,and he mightn’t like that) or Bangor west (which the people there mightn’t like) Also, you’d better tell N Ireland Railways who think their station there is called Bangor West with a capital w.

    Enough.

  • And I was looking forward to a trip to Belfast this evening to see Doug Howlett make his debut for Munster v. Ulster… oh well.

  • Observee

    East Belfast takes an “E”.
    Surely it would need more than one

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Capital ‘E’ when referring to the constituency, lower case when referring to the eastern part of Belfast.

    Simple.

  • Nevin – well spotted on the missing Y (fronts)…

    Mick – thanks for using my picture!

  • Comrade Stalin

    The radio was full of people whining about the state of the roads being “a disgrace”. It’s all a bit over the top. The snow wasn’t anticipated; the DoE’s gritters can’t really be blamed.

    The only way to prevent yesterday’s problems would have been to have a huge crew of snowploughs and gritters on standby all throughout the winter months to spring into action whenever there is any snow. Given that we only have snowfalls this serious once every 3-4 years, this would be a huge waste of taxpayer’s money. Take a day off work for cryin’ out loud and enjoy it.

  • Animus

    I loved it – I thought it was beautiful. There were a few troubles but no mass deaths and much of it was cleared up by rain, so hardly any time to get sick of it (like our brethren in snowier climes). If I had one complaint it would only be that it would have been wonderful to have the snow for Christmas. Metro and Ulsterbus services are already non-existent at that time and it would have meant some travel chaos but many people would have been delighted to have been holed up at home with a giant tub of Quality Street to console themselves.

  • joeCanuck

    I’m fed up with people from (or who have gone to) North America going on about how much snow they have and how much better they put up with it than we do etc etc.

    Yes Eddie. I am one of those self-exiles and I would never dream of saying that; the shitty N.I. summer weather for 5 years in a row was one of the reasons I left. I knew to expect snow in the winter. A place like N.I. cannot, with its relatively mild weather, spend a fortune to be ready for a rare winter storm.

    Take a day off work for cryin’ out loud and enjoy it.
    Exactly Comrade. Even we have to shut everything down a few days each winter. Schoolkids just love those “snow days”.

  • Eddie

    Gonzo says:
    Capital ‘E’ when referring to the constituency, lower case when referring to the eastern part of Belfast.

    I say:
    So what about West Belfast then? Often referred to as such in local, national and international press. I have no objection to that. Any community or area that is an identifiable community or area of its own takes a capital letter. East Belfast, West Belfast,
    North London (and that’s not a constituency)
    Bangor West, the Lower Ards, the Far East…and so on, Gonzo. Eh?

  • Eddie

    Not to mention East Anglia, the Scottish Highlands, the South Seas, or even South Armagh.

  • Jo

    The technicalities of gritting would make a good PhD (if they haven’t already)

    The latest addition was indeed an ovious one – in heavy snow conditions, the gritting lorries can’t go that fast (nor can they at any time) and therefore the effects of any gritting/salting are negated before any distance of road has been treated.

    For once, though, this year there didn’t seem to be the demands for treating every square inch of road – which time and again we are reminded costs a disproportionate amount of money in relation to the additional number of folk who would be helped.

    As CS wisely said above, when it happens, take the day off and enjoy it. I say that as someone who trudged into work, feet completely frozen, only to find a festive email from my director advising that he was “working from home” that day…grrrr….

  • Valenciano

    JoeCanuck – amen to that brother. It’s the truly dismal Summers where the temperatures struggle to breach the 18 degree barrier that are the real problem with NI weather. Last Summer the temps here reached 35 degrees.

    Eddie I don’t live in North America, I live in the Baltic states, where the weather at the moment is, to use an Ulsterism, ‘Baltic’. So the supposed compensations that you speak of really don’t exist. Despite that, people just get on with life and don’t whine about the bad weather – that seems to be a peculiarly British/Irish thing. Here it’s quite the opposite – they moan now that cos of global warming, there isn’t enough snow. Funny old world eh? Temperatures for all of December were a comfortable 2 or 3 degrees and are forecast to return that way next week. I guess Riga’s got more in common with Belfast than ethnic tensions and a Latvian labour force after all?

  • Harry Flashman

    *It’s the truly dismal Summers where the temperatures struggle to breach the 18 degree barrier that are the real problem with NI weather.*

    I often have my parents tell me on the phone, “It’s a really lovely warm day here today, it was 18 degrees”, I hate to tell them that 18 degrees is the coldest temperature setting I can get on my air conditioning.

  • Turgon

    Can I ask a question?

    Does anyone own a 4×4 (you may have to post under a different name to avoid social opprobrium)? If so are they better in the snow? Looking at the television I got the impression that they were little benefit because you get stuck in along line of stationary cars.