I am quite looking forward to Autumn.
I do realise that for most people the idea of the nights drawing in and the weather turning worse does not put a spring in their step – if you will excuse the awful play on words. (It has been a while since I put fingers and brain to keyboard.)
But Autumn and Winter are the seasons I most look forward to.
Now I am a fully-fledged Sussex housewife, I have been keeping a beady eye on the elderberries (ready to be transformed into elderberry vinegar which is surprisingly nice) and the blackberries, and the rejuvenated crabapple tree.
My best beloved keeps talking about ‘nature’s bounty’ but then he is not the one to haul out the jamming pan from the depths of the cellar and make time to make preserves.
Though I have to say, upfront, this is not why I look forward to Autumn.
(Actually all that preserve-making always reminds me this is not the way I foresaw myself using my allotted span.)
I look forward to polo-neck jumpers, going out with a rucksack to gather kindling, seeing the log store full, and, oh yes, oh yes, putting the Aga back on.
Occasional storms that mean power cuts and filling the kitchen with candles, our amazing Rowan tree which every year turns from being a bit of boring number all through Spring and Summer, into a blaze of red berries for ages and encourages the thrushes back.
Snow, of course, is a bonus and one we haven’t had much of for a while but I can live in hope.
I do realise that this is all romantic rubbish and most of the time it is a slog to walk the dog in the mud and rain, there is a point when just because it is going dark at four does not mean it is time to start cooking supper, the grey days are relentless by February and very depressing.
And when we did have snow, I loved it for two or three days of only being able to walk to the village and then I was bored and very pleased to be eventually able to drive to the giddy delights of Petersfield.
But still I look forward to it. And there is still the bottle of Lebanese red wine bought from the very nice Lebanese man who gets it from his family’s Lebanese vineyard (are you sure you understand that this is special Lebanese wine?), which we have been keeping for a couple of years for that night when it is ideally cold and wintry, probably with a snow storm raging , a delicious meal of some sort which I have concocted and am secretly very impressed with and even best beloved says is a great accompaniment to the wine, the log burner going full blast, the dog asleep on her rug, maybe a few candles…..
(I have, in all honesty, to say you might just as well catch us having a bottle of cheap white from Lidl and a risotto and an episode of Lewis, but a girl can dream.)