The clocks have gone back and the nights are drawing in. Christmas is coming and these cold days and nights always remind me of younger days. One thing I notice that's different these days is how warm and comfortable we are at home, a constant level of comfort that I know we take for granted. We have to leave the house to get cold these days but I remember the days when we were kids getting out of bed into the freezing cold! We would run down to the gas wall fire in the living room which mum had put on, and quickly get dressed for school in front of it before leaving in duffel coats into the crunching ice and snow and making our way to school.
The reason our house was so cold was because we had no central heating then, and the windows were single glazed steel Crittall windows which sometimes over night would freeze on the inside! The walls were solid brick, no cavities or insulation. Nowadays it takes no time to heat our home and it seems to stay warm effortlessly. It amazes me how such simple techniques make such an amazing difference to our daily comfort and to the energy efficiency of our homes, namely cavity insulated walls, loft insulation and double glazing.
The mornings these days are slightly less adventurous. A bleary eyed leisurely stroll to the kitchen to put the kettle on in bare feet. One thing I miss about those old days is hearing the weather outside, the wind and the driving rain against the window panes, I have to go camping nowadays to experience those sounds. Our house was cold often but a loving mum would have the fires going and hot water bottles ready for bed. I have fond memories of those days and sometimes dream about getting in a time machine and spending Christmas Eve with our family in our old home. Then maybe in the morning we can all come back to my place in 2016, where I'll have the heating set to 21 degrees... I might still let mum do the cooking though!