Wintery blues

This week daytime temperatures have slipped below 20C, our Indian Summer has gone. There’s a dusting of snow on the hills behind Nice, largely from that cold snap in mid-October, and the leaves are starting to turn. With the clocks having gone back, it’s getting dark earlier. The days are drawing in. Towns are busy putting up their Xmas lights and shops are busying themselves with Festive window displays. Yes, winter is on its way.

It rained all day Saturday so I spent the time wisely by continuing the “Big Tidy Up”, an event long overdue but slowly progressing. Sometimes it feels as if I’m not making enough headway but I’ve only to open the cupboards and drawers, which are neat, tidy and organised beyond belief, to be reassured. Marie Kondo (of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up) would be proud of me. I’ve even managed to get my beloved to clear out his dressing room and anything which no longer gives him joy has gone to the charity shop or skip.

After a dull start, the sun and I duly emerged on Sunday. I opted for a leisurely ride around Cap d’Antibes, one of my regular winter circuits. The market in Antibes was in full swing and crowds thronged the beach and pavements, the former for possibly the last time this year.


There’s nothing better than a ride to clear one’s head and I finally feel I’m making some progress though I’m still a long way off my best. The helmet and glasses thankfully hid my latest eczema attack which is proving to be the worst to date, though I’ve no idea why.

It flared up after my last trip to London, kinda subsided while we were in Como and then came back with a vengeance after my return from Hamburg. The sunshine has allowed me to shelter behind my sunglasses. It’s so unsightly, frankly had I ventured out I wouldn’t have needed a costume to frighten folks at Halloween.

There doesn’t appear to be any rhyme or reason for the attacks, since it first appeared on my hands back in January 2015. Of course, on my more recent trips to the doctor, it’s obligingly disappeared days before my appointment. I may have to take a selfie and send it to her for a few words of wisdom.

Interestingly, after rummaging around on the internet, I’ve discovered that corticosteroids are one of the drugs used to contain it. Now I’m not keen on taking anything but, as an alternative to becoming a recluse, it’s become more appealing. Whether it will allow me to shed unwanted fat, improve my ascending and win the Tour de France are debatable but more and more I’m thinking it might be worth a go!


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