Friday 3 October 2014

Howiya October

I AM resisting the strong urge to add “you fucker” to the end of that greeting because strictly speaking, I am not down with the cool that goes hand in hand with October.

I am firmly of the opinion, however, that October and all of the other autumn months are the most beautiful of the seasons.  They are simply out on their own for their ability to take my breath away. I love the gold, oranges, fiery reds and yellows that are everywhere.  Some of those colours are just beginning whereas others have been around for a while.

I crave a garden that is bursting with colour at this time of year – ripe berries and danger colours hanging off the trees.  I admit to wallowing a little in melancholy at the smell of death in the air.  The smell, the feel of nature dying, or really hibernating and recharging her batteries for spring.

This year we have been lucky with our weather so we really cannot complain.  Not that we Irish ever let anything stop us from having a good old moan.  We have enjoyed a wonderfully hot summer followed by an Indian one.  But now the cold is here biting at our noses, cheeks and feet without socks.

I am loathe to wear a coat.  I keep it on the passenger seat of the car and settle for a scarf at the school gate instead.  I refuse to give in just yet.    

The shops are beginning to sell Halloween paraphernalia and whether I like it or not, there is even some Christmas stuff making an appearance.

Here’s the moan.  I dislike the dark mornings.  Intensely.  It is hard getting up in the dark and I am not at my best at this time normally so throw pitch black at me and I’m just a mad tantrum waiting to happen.

I take great umbrage to not being able to use the clothes line.  I do possess a dryer but it turns all of the clothes into clobber for dolls.  Don’t tell me yours doesn’t.  It tightens and shrinks clothes not to mention costing a bloody fortune to use.  I make great use of my large hot press and hang up all of the clothes to dry on a rail and on the clothes horse.  It takes days this way but needs must.

I detest, actually there is not a word strong enough to impart how much I fucking hate paying for oil over the winter.  It absolutely sickens me! I always feel so suckered by the sheer expense of home heating.

I suffer with cabin fever and a generous dose of the winter blues usually.  SAD is my enemy.  I probably don’t work hard enough to combat it.  I jump up and down in front of a work out DVD the odd time to rid myself of the frustration of not being able to get out for a run in the fresh air.  But it is not the same thing.  By a mile. 

I hate and become quite anxious about driving in the dark.  I will not do it if I can avoid it.      

So what do I like?  Let me see.

I really really like the way I can see my breath on a cold morning.  I also love the bite of that cold and how it feels in my lungs.  Good, clean, alive air.

I love robin song at this time of year.  I get a kick out of spotting where the bird is, marking their territory for the winter.  There is one across the way and most mornings on the school run, I see him on the lowest bar of the gate.

Tomato soup.  Who doesn’t enjoy a hearty bowl of soup with some crusty bread on a brown day?  A warming stew anyone?  Comfort food can attract a lot of criticism but we all need it.

The mid-term break from school.  A whole glorious week off to relax and do nothing.  Except go to the zoo, swim, take the kids to the cinema, collect conkers and acorns and plant them.

And the best thing of all?  Probably January.  The most miserable of months.  It is.  It really is.  Christmas is over.  Everyone is broke, spitting with the injustice of a 5 week month till payday.  The weather seems to get worse and everyone is in a fouler.

But once January is over the promise of spring is around the corner.  So when you think about it, there is really only four short months till we start saying “great stretch in the evenings” again.

So examining it from all of those angles I suppose it’s not too bad really.  And you know what?  I am long overdue a decent coat and I also wouldn’t say no to a pair of boots that don’t let in the wet.

I’ll give it to you:  Howiya October.  You pretty fucker!

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