While Britain grinds to a halt just because of a little bit of snow I can't help wondering why and when we became so incapable of just coping with it.
Despite what the news might be saying, this snowfall is by no means "extreme" as some have been suggesting. We regularly get snow in February - it is not in the least bit unusual. What is unusual is the utter inability of Britain - particularly the public service sector - to just get with it.
One in five people reputedly failed to turn up for work yesterday. I suspect a large proportion of those were people who either get a bus or train to work. From what I gather, the problem with providing train services wasn't the snow - it was the lack of staff. Not sure what the problem was with the buses - though I've heard reports that the bendy buses were jack-knifing all over the place in the icy conditions and also that they were also suffering from a lack of staff.
I'm not that old, but I can remember considerably worse snowfalls and conditions than this back in the sixties, seventies and even the eighties. In the early 1980's I remember a time when my little Riley Elf wouldn't start one particularly cold, snowy morning (the only time it ever let me down, by the way) so I had to get the bus to work. Off I trudged to the nearest bus stop (all of fifty yards) and the double decker Routemaster turned up a little late and a little full, but otherwise no problem.
Yesterday, virtually all the local schools were closed down. Why? Not once in the sixties or seventies was my school closed because of a few inches of snow. We used to have days of lying snow and every day I'd make my way across the snow covered fields to my local primary without any issue. The teachers would all be there as usual; we'd play in the playground making snowmen and having snowball fights and, if the heating was playing up, we'd huddle up in our coats in the classroom during lessons.
I'm sure that there are numerous excuses people will give about why we don't cope anymore, but fundamentally I think far too many of us have just given up trying. The British tradition of stoicism has disappeared from our society and the root of that is the culture of dependency created by years of welfarism, knee-bending to the EU and UN and the erosion of self-reliance.