Friday, 24 September 2010

That September Feeling

It’s kind of flat. And dazzley. Chilly and muted. It’s an important month. A quiet month. A going back to school month. The month that I got married a long, long time ago.

It’s the month when the sun drops in the sky and the mornings turn yellow. There is something special about September sunshine don’t you think? Particularly in the early evening with those long shadows.

The fields are full of tractors ploughing the earth to glorious deep brown speckled with worm hunting seagulls. And there’s that rich smell of fertile soil in the air. One field planted just over a week ago already has a green bloom.

Blackberries hang plump on the bushes and the nights close in fast. Did you know you shouldn’t pick blackberries after the 10th October because the devil spits on them? To be honest would you even want to pick blackberries after the 10th October – they’re normally all nibbled and maggoty and mildewy by then anyway (probably a result of all that devil saliva).

I’ve been picking blackberries, but they’re all eaten before we get home and the kids have purple stained faces and fingers and I’m picking blackberry pips out of my teeth. Yes I know they should be washed, but you can’t beat eating fruit right off the bush – and they all know never to pick the fruit down low.

We’ve had Jupiter in full view, a harvest moon and a proper Indian Summer.

No other month smells like September in the morning. I don’t know what the smell is, but it sticks to the back of the throat and you can taste it. Spiders webs are everywhere and on a foggy morning they glimmer in the hedges.

Cars wake up covered in dew and swallows swoop low across the fields getting ready to leave.

It’s still not cold enough to close the bedroom windows at night so in come the daddy long legs to flap round the lights.

And of course there is the annual invasion of the house spiders. Conkers anyone?

The beaches are empty, the play parks stand quiet, the 9 o’clock roads busy up with the school run.

To be honest I’m feeling a bit flat myself, but a lot of people seem to be feeling that way. The summer arrived too soon and left too early and then it came back again and took everyone by surprise.

I haven’t blogged because I’ve nothing to blog about. I’ve fallen behind with my blog reading and quite a few other things besides. In fact I feel as if I’ve crawled through September while the days have passed me by at frightening speed.

I’d say my get up and go has buggered off and gone if I’d had any get up and go in the first place.

I feel saddened by the news that huge factory farms are planned for the UK where thousands of cows will be kept shut in. And you can’t look at the news any day without there being some new and horrible case of cruelty to animals or children.

You wonder if some people have any heart at all.

And I’ve learned something. I always thought fox poo was difficult to get out of a dog’s fur. Well it is. But trying to get it out of a 3 year old’s trainer is even harder. Said trainer was hosed, disinfected, washed in hot water and Fairy Liquid, disinfected again and it looked clean, but the smell lingers on.

This is where I have to heave a sigh and say I’d best go and get on. Get on with what I don’t know. I wonder what October will be like.


  1. Yes, September did that to me too - is still doing in fact! My typing fingers are frozen in apathy and the word count in recent months has required no fingers or toes at all to count it on!
    Last year I had an October rejuvenation, at least writing wise, so I'm hoping for a repeat performance.
    I hope your October brings you what you would wish for yourself. (Well, not Johnny Depp, obviously - he's mine!)

  2. There's a lot of it about, Teresa. You capture the month so well, and I enjoyed your eloquently expressed description.

  3. You described the autumn so beautifully! I don't know what makes that September smell, but I've been noticing it myself in the crisper air.

    Fox poo is certainly pretty fragrant too isn't it. And that green colour! Yukk. Foxes must have a very strange digestive system.

    Hope your spirits pick up again soon. x

  4. It's good to see you back, Teresa - you've been missed.

    I've fallen behind with my own blogging recently, in fact, for the past six months it's been a bit like wading through treacle. Hope it passes as it's so much fun when things are going well.


  5. I quite like those September days when it is sunny but their is a nip in the air even though my Raynaud's hates cold weather and I think I would hibernate like a dormouse if I could. Sounds like you've got the prewinter doldrums. I hope it passes soon, I know what it's like. Perhaps my Ruby Fruicosa would cheer you up. I created her as a hedgerow nymph (latin name for blackberry)

  6. What a delightful post. September does have a distinct aroma. I live in the US and grew up in India. Every year around this time, the air in Delhi, around twilight, would get smoky (in those days it was charcoal stoves being lit for cooking and heating but now, who knows, must be the pollution) and would give of that crisp, burnt scent. Now, when I go out briefly to inhale the air while letting my cat out at night for his secret night wanderings, I smell something similar - warm and fragrant. Is it wood fires from a neighbor's fireplace? Who knows? It just makes me nostalgic and content at the same time.

  7. Sorry your get up and go has taken a holiday (mine did that in August but is back now)Hope you're feeling more energetic soon.

    You've got the autumn leaf colours to look forward to. Birds will be gathering for their migrations as new visitors arive. There will be misty mornings where you have to walk briskly to keep warm can imagine anything you like might be waiting around the next corner, waiting to be revealed as you get closer.

  8. Ooh Bernadette, fancy you keeping Johnny Depp all to yourself! I don't blame you really :-)
    It really does seem that September gets everyone that way. Hope the October rejuvenation happens again this year.

    Thank you, Martin – your comment means a lot as you are the most eloquent blogger I know! I thought I was being a bit self indulgent with this – I tend to go on a bit when I’m not writing if you know what I mean.

    It’s very hard to describe that smell isn’t it Joanne!
    Funny but I’d been wondering what foxes ate to make their poo that colour – but round here it is jet black so our foxes must have a different diet. I bet the stink is the same though!

    Aw thank you Suzanne – I didn’t expect to be missed. Anyway you’ve been busy with the New Voices so you have a good excuse. I loved yours, I wanted to read more!

    Thanks for the link Madeleine – Ruby is lovely – so much detail right down to her toenails! I had never really looked at a blackberry blossom before or realised how pretty they are. I do sympathise about the Raynaud’s – my daughter suffers from that too.

    How lovely, Hema - your description of the smoky air. That’s one I forgot to mention – the smell of wood smoke, another evocative scent.

    Thanks, Patsy. I love the foggy mornings when things are revealed out of the mist. I even like the spiders webs. And isn’t there something completely peaceful about fog?

  9. Perhaps it's an age thing, Teresa, but I prefer Harrison Ford! Marian H

  10. Well I certainly wouldn't turn Harrison Ford down either, Marian! In fact there's quite a long list . . .

  11. I've got that September feeling

  12. Ah - fox poo. I've been hearing a lot about fox poo recently because my daughter's new puppy rolls in it all the time, and she's in despair. But she was advised to cover him (the puppy, not the fox0 in tomato ketchup before shampooig him, and apparently it works (and after all, he is a sausage dog).

  13. I'd heard about using tomato ketchup to get rid of the skunk smell, but never thought about trying it for fox poo. Thanks, Frances - I'll remember that next time!
    (Aw, a sausage dog - how apt!)

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