Sunday, 21 December 2014

Rainy Winter Solstice - Part Two

 Due to the cyclical nature of rains, winds, clouds and oceanic currents, some
picture by marina
of the rain drops that fall today may contain the very same water that fell one hundred, one thousand or one million years ago. The rain beating against your window could very well be the same rain that drenched poor old saint Patrick when he was touring the west fighting giants, ‘converting’ young lady pagans, pissing off druids and causing all manner of mayhem and miracles.

The rain can be a catalyst for great fun and enjoyment. Walking in the rain is just that little bit more vigorous and adventurous – I tell my children we’re re-enacting the adventures of Tom Crean and Ernest Shackleton. And of course nothing beats coming in from a cold rainy walk, and sitting down to hot home-made barley and veg soup. Even being stuck in the house can be fun: Imagination and games are a great for keeping cabin fever away. 

Board games are brilliant for releasing tension, laughing and engaging with friendsand family.  No matter how much fun computer games are, they still cannot replicate the interaction between people, the sigh of someone about to make a clever move, the crack of the dice, the widening or narrowing of the eyes of your opponent, or all the chatter, emotional outburst, and words of encouragement or trickery that swirl around a board game. 

Play is a great way of staying connected with those around you. This is particularly important as the lack of light at this time of year can play havoc with biological clock, Serotonin and Melatonin levels, all of which can effect our sleeping patterns and mood. In worse cases this can lead to Seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Young people between the ages of 18 and 30 are most vulnerable to SAD, but there is much you can do to limit winter depression: get out into the fresh air as much as you can, go for walks, avoid alcohol as it is a depressant, and when in doors sit near windows. Also eat plenty of fresh fruit and veg, talk to your friends and family and don’t be shy about contacting your doctor. For more information SAD check out HSE online  

Finally, the rain does stop occasionally, giving way to rainbows and incredible sky-scapes full of Nimbostratus and Cumulonimbus stretching and warping into all manner of fantastical shapes around patches of blue sky as small as puddles or as vast as oceans.   

So if the weather is getting you down, remember winter, like all the seasons, brings it owns pleasures. So stay warm, play games, go for walks, check out the clouds and remember to keep an eye on any friends who may also be finding things a bit tough going. Oh and finally, Happy Winter Solstice – I hope you have a good one. See you all next year for more riskybizzness fun.

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