Monday, February 28, 2011

17Jan1881, London in Snow

LONDON, January 17th, 1881.
—Towards evening the wind got up, and blew all night and all Tuesday with a big snowfall. The drifts were no joke, and by Wednesday we found out that there is a kind of universal block and stoppage of traffic, more or less, all over the British Isles and the Continent into the bargain. No post from the country whatever on Wednesday. I walked up to Bulstrode Street on Tuesday at 6 and had no real difficulty in fighting my way, but there was hardly a vehicle to be seen. It snowed most of Wednesday into the bargain. Uncle W. reappeared in the House on Monday and made a thundering fine energetic speech against a monstrous Irish amendment to the Address. The wretched carriage had to drag F. to dine at the Speaker's, so it took me over to the Granvilles', where I found I was in for a fearful diplomatic dinner and any amount of French. Sat by the Greek Ambassador and avoided politics!

—Thurs. 20th. The snow and wind are over, but the streets don't improve much. The snow is in huge heaps on either side, and pathways cut out in the drifts across squares, etc.; cabs mostly with 2 horses, hansoms tandem. The silence is quite beautiful.

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