There cannot be many Remembrance Day Services that I have missed watching on television at the Cenotaph in London, with all the solemnity and honor that goes with it to remember the fallen soldiers over the last century.
As the TV cameras pan around during the ceremony and the march past, it always very noticeable, (that's if your looking) the stage at which the trees and leaves are at that line the street. This year the leaves were so green and fresh, more so than at any time in the last fifty years.
When we had our first TV and that service was first televised, even though it was in black and white you could always see how many leaves were on the trees, when we had had a few early sharp frosts the trees would be almost naked of leaves, this was the first thing that Mother always noticed.
It was my old mother who always did the weather forecast for the whole family every day right up till she died, looking at the old barometer that hangs in the house, watching which way the smoke blew when she lit the fire, watching the clouds and listening to the six am news and weather program on the radio. She advised us when to sow in the spring when to mow for hay, when to cut the corn (in UK that's wheat barley and oats), a whole mine of information centered around the moon phases as well.
So far this back end we only had a slight hint of frost on the 9th November 2013, up until now, the grass has been growing and the ground still relatively warm, and the ditches are only now beginning to run, the little rain we've had has now topped up the ground water.
Never, never, never believe any war will be smooth and easy, or that anyone who embarks on the strange voyage, can measure the tides and hurricanes he will encounter. The statesman who yields to war fever must realize that once the signal is given, he is no longer the master of policy but the slave of unforeseeable and uncontrollable events.
Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)