Changing Seasons


Say what you like but you don't properly appreciate the change from  autumn to winter until you are retired. I know when working there are the horrors of a commute through snow and ice on occasions, whilst retirement affords the opportunity to huddle indoors and avoid the harshness of the conditions outside. However, it is in retirement that there is the time to observe what's happening outdoors as the leaves change colour and fall to the ground, and also to participate actively in the transition from one season to the next.

It's certainly not the role of a calm observer either. This week, conscious of a forecast which translates into winter beginning tomorrow with plummeting temperatures and no obvious recovery for the forseeable, Mister E and I have been in a mad rush to batten the proverbial hatches. 

The garden has been put to bed with the sunken vegetable beds tucked up in weed suppression fabric and the containers with tender plants moved into the greenhouse. Shrubs have been pruned and borders cleared of fading bedding plants and mulched. We've scarified the lawn and divided perennials. Pots have been filled with bulbs and winter flowering pansies. Finally, today I tidied the greenhouse, much to the disgust of the resident frog that, with bad grace, has moved its home from under a tomato growbag to a spot beneath a curled up hosepipe.

Best of all and in a spirit of true readiness, Mister E has put the winter tyres back onto my car.

Our supplies of cocoa and mulled wine have been replenished and our winter jackets, padded trousers, hats, gloves and boots are at the ready. We've even stocked up on peanuts and seeds for the birds. Fortunately we don't live in an age where there's a need to store a winter's supply of food and wood for the fire or move the animals indoors to help both your own and their survival.

Nevertheless it  still feels as though we've acknowledged the enormous transformation that takes place as winter creeps in. Rather than ignoring the alteration by continuing with the to and fro of office lives, we have bowed to nature and made appropriate adjustments around us and to our routines.  

The dark mornings mean we rise later; hot soup is now a staple lunchtime offering; we cosy up in armchairs reading and watching television and my knitting needles are once again making an appearance. We shall venture out whatever the conditions but for how long, how far and at what time will be dictated by the elements rather than an unshakeable commitment.

 We do not hibernate but we certainly snuggle!


Jean said…
You're absolutely right. When I was working weather was irrelevant (except at the weekend) unless too much snow stopped me from getting there and I hardly noticed it.
Caree Risover said…
Remember too all those sunny weeks in the summer, when it poured down at weekends?
Jean said…
I remember getting shirty one year when a retired person (!) commented what a lovely summer we had had and I snapped "not at the weekends it wasn't!". Which was true, it had rained every Sunday and Monday, my two days off at the time, for weeks.
Caree Risover said…
I wonder if the rain still does that - certainly the summer weather seems to have vastly improved since I retired!
Treaders said…
Oh the days spent slogging into work in the wind and rain and snow were hell. I was just numb. You're so right that with few exceptions the weather can do what the hell it likes now can't it!
Caree Risover said…
So long as I can snuggle down and have put the garden to bed
Jennyff said…
I’d like to hibernate until at least March. I’d be able to pig out in preparation, wake up my usual weight, well rested and raring to go - as much as I ever am.
Caree Risover said…
I confess that I do like your idea of "pigging out in preparation"!

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