This morning I put on a pair of socks for the first time since Spring, which is a clear indicator that summer has passed and wintry ways must be reinstated. The forest, which I study from my office window for the first pale shoots which slowly create that soft green haze that heralds spring, is starting to reveal its red and gold which, however glorious, will be but a short lived flourish of pyrotechnics before months of black bare boughs. Long evening sundowners in the garden have been replaced by a glass of wine in the comfort of an armchair, warmed by the crackling fire of the wood burner. It seems such a short time ago that we woke the garden from its winter slumber, yet now I can hear a vegetal yawning each time I open the garden door. The last magnificent tomatoes are hanging on their vines in our neighbours’ potagères, whilst seasonally coloured squashes and pumpkins lie alongside their gnarled winter brethren, the root vegetables, on the market stalls. It’s time for thick soups and deeply flavoured stews, ceps cooked in duck fat with tiny potatoes, fruit pies and crumbles, and roasted joints of meat with caramelised sticky edged roast vegetables and dark, wine filled gravy. Having longed for summer and the pleasures of that season I now find myself looking forward to the flavours of Autumn.There is a certain foolishness in liking or disliking seasons of the year because their arrival and departure are as ineluctable as death itself, yet if this is foolishness then I am a friend of folly because I find January, February and March pretty bloody awful.
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