If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, or perhaps anywhere, you might be forgiven for thinking immediately that 'beauty' and 'January' are oxymoronic terms. I am a pretty committed January basher myself. In England, this month is particularly brutal. I saw it described online the other day as a 'miserable f#*king bastard.' Sorry for the language, but you can't argue with its accuracy.
Then yesterday something slightly magical happened. The morning looked something like this:
The frost glimmered and sun shimmered and all morning long the countryside glistened.
When January is endless days of enveloping shades of grey, when the air is damp and thick with mizzle, when the sky feels like it is mere inches above your head and you haven't seen the sun in days, it can all get a little too much. But the frosty mornings, cold and crisp as they are, become a joyous antidote to the seasonal glum.
This year, somehow, January has felt less glum. It might be the uncharacteristically clear blue days, the early appearance of snowdrops, or it might just be my deep commitment to my pj's/hot water bottle/book.
Long may the frosts bring sparkle to our January.
Happy New Year.