HELEN LANG: Feeling sorry for January

What can we possibly say that will make you think that January is a delight?

What can we possibly say that will make you think that January is a delight?

Did I hear you say “nothing?”

I feel sorry for January. Nobody seems to think it is wonderful with its gray skies, chilly drizzle and barren soil. The only happy thing about it is next month is February and February is a short month and then it is March.

And, lo and behold, there are snowdrops in bloom and the odd daring crocus sending up narrow leaves and faint yellow buds. And, whadda you know, it is spring!

Meanwhile I am playing host to a horrendous cold. My chest is crackling like a good wood fire and my harsh cough is scaring away the gulls and the crows.

All this because I went to the doctor to renew a prescription and walked into a host of people with running noses, hacking coughs and desperate, dispairing eyes.

I fled outside in terror and hunkered down on the narrow protective metal barrier that keeps cars from running into the building, but it was too late. A clever, unpleasant bug had seen me and decided I’d be a good candidate for a chest cold.

‘Tis the season I suppose. So after two days crouched in bed, coughing as loudly as an African elephant trumpeting a warning, I’m writing to you to wish you a Happy New Year … somewhat late, but sincere and the promise of better things to come.

And I promise there are no cold germs stuck to this column.

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.