Despite Autumn faithfully and predictably arriving every year at the same time, it still never ceases to surprise me how beautiful it is, possibly because each year it seems to sneak up and blow you away with its seemingly impossible colours. The summer months are always wonderful, and living in a place which has the 4 distinct seasons makes the transition from hot, carefree summer days to dark, short winter days so much more bearable by easing us in to it slowly. Now I must admit a winter with snow and skiing is a great deal more tempting than a rainy, grey one, but it’s still always a challenge to let go of the summer regardless of what’s around the corner!
Every year I cherish the Autumn and make sure I stop to appreciate just how unique and stunning it is, even on a grey day…!
I wrote a few weeks ago heralding the coming of Winter, the colder days, the darkness creeping in earlier and earlier, the imminent arrival of the snow… But I feel the need now to perhaps delay that slightly and cling on to the beautiful, and highly underrated, season that is Autumn. I find myself thinking the same thing every year and once again reminding myself that Autumn is one of the most stunning times of the year. In the Alps it is all about winter and summer, the periods bridging the gaps are simply referred to as ‘Interseason’ and I believe are totally forgotten and glossed over.
I feel so strongly that we must embrace these ‘in between’ periods and not just see them as time to kill before the ‘proper’ seasons arrive. There is so much to do in the mountains right now, with the added benefit of it not being too hot, so you can often actually do far more than in the sumer. There is also no-one around. Summer peak season is so overrun with holiday-makers, yet no-one seems to come in the Autumn. It’s like a secret, our own personal paradise, deserted and beautiful. On a walk last week I found myself becoming quite the nature lover and flora photographer! Everywhere I looked I saw stunning colours in the trees, the leaves and the heather. I’ll include some of my amateur snaps, no photoshop, no colour enhancement, just the pure beauty of nature at its best.
Even on a rainy, grey day such as today, I often think it’s important to try and make the most of it, and get outside. The beauty of a less than perfect day is that when you’re out there, you often have it all to yourself, so you can enjoy the peace and quiet that you will rarely find when the sun is shining. Despite the grey skies and drizzle, and keen for some exercise this afternoon, I went for a run in the mountains, and in the 2 and a half hours I was out, I saw 3 people. The view was less than spectacular, and underfoot occasionally slippery, but as clichéd as it sounds, it gave me a couple of hours out on my own, to think and enjoy the solitude and the beauty around me. Autumn is on its way out here, and it’s now dark by 5.30pm! The snow is coming, but I’m holding on to the remnants of the incredible colours that Autumn provides, before it all turns to white. However I will certainly not be complaining when this arrives, as winter in the mountains provides a whole new level of beauty, and brings with it so many enjoyable ways to fill a cold day!