We have had some jolly strange weather in the last couple of years. As a youngster I can well remember we had proper seasons when the weather was pretty well predictable and as a result, various domestic jobs were timed in accordance with the likely weather and light conditions. For example, we still use the word springcleaning – the point here is that the days got longer and warmer; the fug of a house shut in over winter, with coal dust, every day living debris and mucky stuff trodden into rugs and sofas would benefit from a really good clean in one fell swoop. Generally there being no vacuum cleaners until after the second world war – it was brooms, dustpan and brush and a bucket and wash cloth. Coal firs and kitchen ranges used to produce a huge amount of dust and coal coloured mess. This needing sweeping up twice a day and all solid floors were swept regularly to stop vermin from finding anything too interesting! I still use the old ways when I can’t be bothered to fetch the heavy vacuum cleaner out of the garage!