November is the month where fall shows its teeth. It has nothing to do with the still almost summer of September, or the crisp, golden vibe of October. The harvest is brought in, the fields are empty runways for the wind to chase leaves across. Lace borders of frost frame the grass blades in the mornings and half-dead sunflowers stand guard like foot soldiers of the garden. The vineyards dress in flamboyant colours of yellow, orange and deep red until the first hard freeze leaves them bare and naked. Fog blankets drift over the meadows in the morning, and villages huddle deeper into the folds of the mountain. Darkness lingers longer in the mornings, and arrives earlier every evening. The nights are getting colder. November is not for the faint of heart.
I am not a winter person. I’m a solar powered, heat loving individual, that needs the sun like a lizard, to warm my bones and get me going. November is the harbinger of winter, the prelude to the symphony of days and days of relentless fog, biting cold and the longest night of the year. In defeat I thaw myself in the bathtub (1) and cook tasty stews.
I may not be a winter person, but I’m also of the opinion that whining doesn’t help. I can’t change the position of the sun, so I better accept the thing called seasons – or relocate to the equator (2). Fall brings back my beloved Doc Martens, it’s finally cold enough to knit again without it feeling icky, and to be honest, not much can compare to a full forest covered in glittering frost. It gets dark earlier, but that also means I can see the moon and the stars, and I might finally give in and get myself a telescope. Harvested corn fields are the best kind of corn fields: they don’t block the view, and they don’t rattle in the wind like the bones of the deceased. With them gone, there’s a lot more landscape to admire.
Even though the longest night is yet to come, it’s also almost here, and then the days will get longer again.
(1) Lizards have heat lamps in their terrariums, I have my bathtub. Same purpose, different method.
(2) Which poses its own set of challenges, like hurricanes and tsunamis.