Tonight is apparently the mildest December night we've had for several decades and temperatures look set to continue to be mild. I wouldn't waste your money betting on a white Christmas, if I were you. Here in Hampshire I see the daffodils have begun sprouting out of the grass and when I noticed there was blossom on the path and wondered where it was coming from, I traced it to what I think is probably a flowering cherry tree that has decided to try to bloom before its leaves have formed. If it is a flowering cherry tree, I'll ask the gardener to hammer some copper nails in it, since I don't wish to suffer the mess they make again. Some idiot in the council had one of the roads in Rochester lined with hundreds of the damn things. They looked pretty for one week of the year, then for the next three weeks of that month as they shed their petals onto the parked cars and garden pathways, they caused such consternation among the residents that eventually the council needed to dig them all up to appease its taxpayers. There was one in the garden of the last house I lived in that shed its petals all over the patio, such that letting the dog out for a wee, resulted in the living room carpet needing to be hoovered on her return. Anyway, I digress... Will we have flowers in the spring, or will they all be over by then? Might we anticipate even larger sprouts with our Christmas dinners next year? Can we anticipate the time will come when they do away with winter altogether, since there will be little other than darkness to discern it from the other three seasons?