The only things that are visible in the teary distance are the fluorescent orange jackets of the field workers. The men and women harvesting the sprouts and cutting cabbage by hand. They are merely luminous blobs in the half light, bent double, toiling their way up and down the soggy rows behind the tractors.
While I wait for it to pass, there’s no let up for them because of the driving weather; they have to keep going. I can imagine the wet running down their faces and seeping round necklines . The heavy weight of the mud sticking to their boots making moving laborious work as if their job wasn’t laborious enough. They’ll feel the slash of sleet across the eyes and soreness of backs aching with bending. The beating steel is relentless. The bash of the storm gale force.
I wait a bit. When I go out the sleet has stopped but the cold is enough to cut noses. Even the dog turns her face from the merciless attack of the elements. These people work out in it from six until six, see the light come and go, feel a brief interlude of wintry sun before the next onslaught of driving wet when I am intensely grateful to be back inside.
So when you tuck into those fresh veg this Christmas spare a thought for the toil of those who made it possible!