"So dull and dark are the November days.
The lazy mist high up the evening curled,
And now the morn quite hides in smoke and haze;
The place we occupy seems all the world."- John Clare, November
I cannot believe that it is already November. Not to mention the fact that it is almost the MIDDLE of November! 2011 is passing so quickly, it seems like last week I was wandering the streets in sandals, whereas today I find myself thinking about my menu for Thanksgiving and pulling on my boots in the morning for warmth. The leaves started turning weeks ago, and now they are layering the ground like a springy carpet. You won't find any crisp leaves primed for crunching in this country. There's too much moisture in the air thanks to both the rain and the infamous Edinburgh Haar. According to Lonely Planet, "A distinctive feature of Edinburgh's weather is the 'haar', a dense, chilly fog that often blows in from the North Sea when the wind is in the east. " Yeah, that pretty much says it. The haar helps Edinburgh keep up her mysterious je ne sais quoi.
Edinburgh Haar, Picture courtesy of Edinburgh Spotlight
Autumn has always been my favourite season. I love sweater weather, fall colours, the smell of winter and smoke in the air and the magical feel that the shift in the seasons seems to infuse into the everyday mundane. It's easier to smile when the world around you is so colourful!
Edinburgh is a city that thrives in the Fall. The bright blue sky contrasts with the fiery leaves, the gray stone buildings seeming to pull more character from the overcast skies than fading into the backdrop of the city. The air is crisp and the wind is brisk, necessitating the use of layers and the return of rosy cheeks and cold noses!
The Balmoral Hotel and Register House seen from a bus on Leith Street
National Archives of Scotland
I know that some people find autumn to be a bit depressing-a reminder that the year is coming to an end, life in someways is coming to an end, and the sun will be moving farther and farther away from us until midwinter passes. But for me, autumn is the time to start celebrating the beautiful things that the end of the year brings us-different foods, different fashions, trips to see friends and family, and the best of the yearly holidays! Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year!
If I had my way, Fall would last much longer each year-I'm sure no-one would mind shaving off a few weeks of Edinburgh's sad excuse for a summer and brutal winter in order to spend a few more weeks walking through an autumn wonderland!