Sunday, October 22, 2006


I hate this time of year. I don't mind full-blown winter when it's cold and frosty and you can warm up warm with a scarf and gloves but I don't like autumn. Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness as Keats once said. Mist is all I seem to have seen over the past 7 days when I went on my little wander up to County Durham and now I'm back in the South it has been decidely more 'Soggy South East' than 'Sunny South East'. Maybe I've been spoilt by being in Newcastle for 4 years, after all it snows every year there and by November when it's raining in the South, it is either snowing or sleeting in the 'toon'. It makes deciding what to wear a whole lot simpler; coat every day, umbrella in the bag most days and thick jumpers. At the moment, with temperatures approx. 4degC above average for this time of year I can't even bear to wear a wool jumper or cotton polo-neck yet for fear of over-heating.

Also, what is the obsession for all things Christmas in mid-October? I went into a garden centre near Stockton on Tees the other day and as soon as I had walked through the door I was accosted by light-up reindeer, giant polar bears and then after walking further on I ended up in a darkened room full of Christmas trees covered in lights, and all-singing all-dancing light-up models of penguins and such like. I found it quite scary, not to mention mesmorising, in fact I think I almost knocked 5 small children over in my rush to find natural light, just because they were standing dazed and confused by the whole issue. In the end I ended up in the aquatic section of the garden centre and found looking at the goldfish quite calming after such an experience.

At this time of year, if it's not Christmas then it's Halloween or Bonfire Night. I cannot believe the number of people who are setting off fireworks already, there were about three lots going off last night alone. Maybe though, they were ex-Royal Navy and celebrating the 201st anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar, although I doubt it.

Whinge over now, until the clocks go back next weekend, which is another of my dreads. Roll on April!