I am back from mainland Europe, and very happy to see that people were reading and commenting in my absence :) You guys rock!
I had a lovely time, ate rather a lot of chocolate (oh, Belgium, thou art a harsh mistress. . .) and overcame my combined fear of enclosed spaces and spiral staircases to climb a few monuments. It was lots of fun.
And I have arrived back just in time for the start of October.
For me, autumn starts in October. In Ireland, it's not unusual for us to have a period of nice weather in September (we joke that as soon as the schools re-open, the weather improves) and although winter can descend very early, October feels like autumn to me. The weather is cooler and crisper, and you will no longer be surprised by the occasional unseasonal sunny day. The shops are full of Halloween and the air is full of woodsmoke and blown brown leaves.
I love autumn. I love the start of any new season, but especially autumn. It has many advantages - I can enjoy that lovely back-to-school feeling, that sense of possibility, while luxuriating in the knowledge that I never have to go back to school and pretend I care about Irish grammar ever ever again. I can bundle up in giant cuddly jumpers. I can rediscover the depth and breadth of my tea collection and contemplate hot chocolate after dinner. And if you stare at the word 'autumn' for a while, it begins to look like nonsense.
There is a great deal to recommend it!
Autumn also means that we're drawing closer to Nanowrimo. I'm returning to my role as co-Municipal Liaison (volunteer-type) for Dublin for my third year, and I'm already trying to choose which book to work on for Nano 2012. And I'm heading for a weekend away with a friend in mid-November, which should a) be lots of fun, and b) will motivate me to get ahead on my word count early this time.
So what do you guys have coming up this autumn (or fall, if you prefer)? And what's your favourite season?