My favourite time of year.
Autumn means cuddling up indoors on cold, rainy days, under a blanket, with the company of a hot tea and a good book.
Autumn means golden sunlight through fiery leaves on long walks through the woods.
Autumn means a woolly jumper and thick socks, and a scarf to warm your neck from the crisp air.
Autumn means a crunchy outdoor carpet and silent showers of brown and orange cascading from the trees.
Autumn means hot mugs of steaming tea, or coffee, or hot chocolate, to warm your hands after being outside.
Autumn means oranges and browns and the warm colours that summer can only dream of.
Autumn means carving pumpkins, trick or treating and dressing up as cats and witches.
Autumn means hot soup steaming up your glasses as you lift the spoon to your mouth.
Autumn means squashes and pumpkins and potatoes and leeks.
Autumn means Winter is around the corner, with lots of its own lovely surprises.
I thought I would write a post about Autumn, as, alongside Winter, it’s my favourite season. All of the things I love about Autumn are in the short passage above.
A lot of people seem to look forward to Summer the most– probably due to the gorgeous, hot weather, the opportunity to tan their skin and the green of the leaves and vibrancy of the flowers. But, in my opinion, Summer is highly overrated– in England, anyway.
Though you can eat ice cream and bask in the sunlight, it tends to be full of disappointments for me, as expectations are often flattened with dismay. The English Summer is much like an empty piñata; the prospect of it is exciting, and you plan all of these things in your head that you will do when the sweets rain down on your turn. But when you hit at it, nothing falls out of its belly, and you’re filled with disappointment at the plans that have been scuppered through the loss. As Summer creeps nearer, you plan to go to the beach, have picnics in fields and go swimming in the sea. Summer arrives and there are more iffy and wet days than there are hot and glorious ones- or it’s so hot that being outside for longer than thirty minutes brings on a feeling not unlike one that I expect you would experience having spent a few minutes in the Sahara. You’re hot, sweaty, bothered and in an altogether bad mood. All you feel like doing is finding some shade and having a glass of ice cold water, shortly followed by a shower. Ice cream melts down the cone and onto your hand, drying and becoming sticky. Wearing a sunhat makes your head hot and sweaty and taking it off means that your head and face get hot and burned and sore. Sitting on a sandy beach is all well and good so long as there isn’t a breeze, because the slightest touch of wind encourages sand onto and into every single one of your belongings, not to mention in your mouth, hair and eyes. No breeze, however, means that the day is too hot and the heat is stifling.
I won’t go on, but as you can tell, though I normally look forward to the warmth and light of Summer after a long, dark Winter, I rarely enjoy it because there are more things that irritate me or go wrong during the season than there are things I relish.
Autumn, however. You know what to expect. Beside the slightly annoying time frame at the beginning of Autumn when Summer still tries to sneak its way in around midday, and you find yourself boiling hot in the tights and jumper that you put on when it was freezing cold in the morning, with Autumn, you generally know what to expect, and there’s therefore no disappointment.
You know that Autumn will bring darker mornings and evenings.
You know that rain will fall fairly often and that you will need a coat and a scarf when you leave the house.
You know to put the kettle on to boil as soon as you get home, because you need warming through.
You know to watch out for slippery fallen leaves on the floor after it has rained.
You know that, during Autumn, you won’t be able to enjoy a day lounging around on the beach, but that you will instead be able to visit a coffee shop and sit in the warmth whilst it’s chilly outside.
Because you expect all of these things, you know prior to their occurrence that you’ll have to deal with them. Whereas when it rains on a summers day, when you had made plans to go to the beach with your friends, you get let down and have to cancel altogether or hastily make other plans.
I think that Autumn is far more beautiful.
I love the leaves, the opportunities to get cosy when it’s chilly, the hot drinks, the Autumn colours, the big jumpers and scarves, the soup, the pumpkins. Autumn is my favourite season because he represents the perfect midway point between the bright days of Summer and the chilliness of Winter. And though my feet are cold even whilst I write this, I don’t mind that Autumn brings darker days and a chill in the air. I think he does a pretty good job of slowly introducing us to Winter, and for that, he’s thoroughly my favourite!
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(the featured image is not my own)
The Cosy Onion