Perhaps because I was rudely awakened by a parcel delivery this morning. I started thinking about hibernation. My warm and cosy bed still beckoned me to return to it, but adopting my usual ‘I am up now’ attitude, I boiled the water for my coffee, and stared through the kitchen windows at the bright but cold day outside.
January and February are pretty useless months, as far as I am concerned. If you live in northern Europe, you can expect little relief from bad weather, which often gets worse as February drags on. My year might just as well have only ten months in it, as I have little inclination or inspiration to do much at all, between Christmas and my birthday in March. Short bleak days, and long dark evenings always make me wish I was wealthy enough to escape the English winter, and spend it somewhere with a kinder climate.
Then I thought about those animals that hibernate. Dormice, Hedgehogs, Ladybirds, Bumblebees, Snakes, Frogs and Toads, and Bats. In other countries, Bears also hibernate, (after a fashion) as do Skunks, Ground Squirrels, Hamsters, and Prairie Dogs. This seems to me to be an eminently practical solution to avoiding the worst time of the year. Eating enough food during the plentiful times, storing some away in case you get peckish when resting, and dozing away quietly as all the bad stuff goes on around you, unaffected by the winter blues.
Humans got a raw deal from nature. We have to constantly drink, and also exercise to avoid muscle wastage or vascular disease. But mostly, we have a brain that is too active, so we are too easily bored. To make for a successful hibernation, we would no doubt require books and light to read them by, even a TV or radio, to break the monotony. I know, it might seem to be just a silly, random thought on a cold morning.
But just imagine how nice it could be, to avoid the bleak months, and wake refreshed at the time when everything around you is reinvigorated.