The weather that keeps everyone at home

The weather forecast for the weekend is bad. Snow down to 700 metres, rain in the lowlands, grey and even greyer. In the lowlands gale force gusts are forecast. Good weather for tidying up the cellar. But I can’t face that the whole weekend and therefore just before midday with my youngest we get ready for skating. Its blowing like crazy and today I would not have dared to go into the woods for fear that one of the trees might not be able to withstand this force.


The ice rink is empty. That’s not quite true, because it is fairly well covered by the leaves flying around. Once fallen, they remain on the ice surface, because at about 10 degrees it is far too warm and the ice is melting. Over the ice a small lake is forming, from which the leaves cannot free themselves. On the other hand there is almost no one there; I count about 10 lonely souls. It’s seldom that one sees the artificial rink at the Dolder on Sunday so empty. No crowd pressing to buy their tickets. The three employees at the desk are eager to serve us, otherwise they have nothing to do.

It is not raining, the winds have blown away the clouds and we make our circuits with pleasure, but at first very cautiously. Firstly it is our first time this year and secondly, if one falls, one lands in a pool of icy water. A myriad of coloured leaves whirls through the air, a spectacular and marvellous sight. Five employees are engaged in sweeping the ice free of the leaves non-stop and systematically. That is also an interesting sight. The restaurant is completely empty and so the self-service, which at lunch time is normally overfilled, becomes a pleasant served round, where we as guests enjoy the full and immediate attention of the staff. Today the guest-employee ratio is about 1:1. Maybe there are even more employees than guests.

After lunch we become more confident and unfortunately over-confident. We race at quite a speed over the rink and because we don’t have to avoid others and have to look out for almost no-one, we are fast – much too fast.

Catching one another is fun, landing on the ground, and that happened to both of us, is a very wet, unpleasant matter. Then one gets wet through to the underclothes, because there is really a lot of water on the ice. But even the wet underclothes don’t spoil our fun. Actually we are very enthusiastic. How often are I and my son able to have the ice to ourselves and to let off steam.

Long live the bad weather, when everyone stays at home.

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Image source header: w.r.wagner  /

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