Last updated at 12:13 GMT, Thursday, 27 December 2012

To be on ice

Frozen crane sculpture in Tokyo

As temperatures plummet in Tokyo, icicles hang from the wings of a frozen crane sculpture on a fountain. Photo: Tsuno Yoshikazu/AFP/Getty

Today's Phrase

'To be on ice' is an expression used to talk about decisions or plans that are not going to be dealt with for the moment.

For example:

The Middle East peace process may be on ice but it's still a priority for many Western leaders.


I've had to put my trip to the Caribbean on ice as I need the money to get my car repaired.

Don't confuse it with

Another phrase is 'to be on thin ice', which means to be in a difficult situation.

John opened a luxury goods shop in 2008. He was on thin ice when the recession started.

Interesting fact

According to the Guinness Book of Records the lowest temperature recorded in a place where there is a permanent population is -68°C. The temperature was recorded in Russia in the Siberian village of Oymyakon in 1993. It's the coldest ever recorded outside Antarctica.

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