I woke up this morning to read that storms have wacked north and north western France, badly disrupting air and sea travel. I can believe it. I was listening to the effects during the night.
When the wind blows hard around here a curious ghostly noise emanates from somewhere around our house, a sound like a sigh mixed up with a musical note. It can be eerie and unsettling.
As I lay curled up in bed last night, the ghostly groans began in the very early hours and continued over and over, repeating in a regular rhythm that made them sound animal in nature. I snuggled down further, wrapping the quilt up around my head because the pulsing groans began to sound more like the sounds made by a great, slumbering beast that had slumped over and enveloped our house. The winds increased and plant debris was hurled against our large windows, ticking and knocking for hours on end. I can tell you that at that point I was curled up tight like a pill bug and burrowed deep down under cover, grateful to be cocooned in the warmth and safety of my bed.
I heard very recently that up until the 20th century Breton peasants would virtually hibernate during the winter months. Not hibernate in the sense of a dormouse with physical bodily changes, but ‘hibernate’ as in staying in, all snuggled together, snoozing the cold winter months away and only awaking periodically to take vital sustenance.
That strikes me as a very good idea.