Updated 14 May 2014

In praise of the blanket

Temperatures have plummeted countrywide and there is no doubt that winter is here in all its glory.

Temperatures have plummeted countrywide and there is no doubt that winter is here in all its glory.

My house was built of solid concrete bricks in 1897 before people really understood the finer details of home insulation. No doubt the house is solid enough that it will still be standing in a 100 years when I am long gone. But it will still be freezing inside. It is often colder inside the house in the mornings than it is outside.

I am unwilling to spend my hard-earned money on enormous electricity bills – it's not environmentally friendly anyway and I like to think that it is green living rather than stinginess that makes me hesitant to switch on any of my three heaters.

I have rediscovered the blanket. It is one of those things we simply take for granted, until we don't have it. There is a reason why kids have security blankets. We should actually all have one. It might just be frowned upon if you arrive with yours at work.

Blankets are relatively cheap, they last for years, they're portable,  you can snuggle into them and they add nothing at all to your electricity bill. Winter is just so much more bearable if you're not nursing frozen hands and feet.

What's more, fleecy blankets these days are lightweight and they dry easily and quickly, unlike the hand-knitted or crocheted variety of my youth.

It seems so simple: the first thing you need to do to look after your health in winter is to avoid getting really cold for prolonged periods of time. So use your body temperature instead of heaters: go down the road of gloves, beanies, warm socks, fleece-lined tops and blankets. You will be glad when your next municipal account arrives.


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