Where has this year gone?! Time is such a strange phenomenon. It feels as if I’ve done everything and nothing over the past few weeks. Unfortunately I had one of the worst chest infections I’ve ever had for about three weeks which meant that most activities went out of the window. Somehow I also managed to start a new job within my company in this time. Change is good and it’s remarkable how easy it is to become complacent and over-comfortable within a familiar bubble. The new role is a great opportunity and I’m really enjoying it so far.
Speaking of change, I wrote about how gorgeous autumn was in Greenwich a little while ago. Autumn doesn’t feel like a real season to me. It is characterised by beautiful colours, a new rhythm of weather and people defying winter’s arrival by getting outside and making the most of the days still being of a reasonable length while they last. Retrospectively autumn feels like it lasted a few wondrous days. In actual fact I know I spent a good few weekends admiring how Greenwich and London is made so beautiful when touched by autumn light. Winter really does feel like a real season though. Although it’s been very mild in temperature (I shed my coat today and strolled around in a t-shirt and my scarf… what chest infection?) I can’t help but feel as if I’m living in near-constant darkness as, like many, I leave my house for work in the dark and it’s already dark by the time my working day is done. I feel as if we’ve settled in for winter for the next six months.
I suppose getting through challenging times of year is made more bearable by trying to find the beauty in such times. One of the best things about this season, obviously, is Christmas and all of its traditions. A personal tradition of mine is that my boyfriend and I go to the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Natural History Museum and treat ourselves to fancy food and drinks afterwards. We celebrate our anniversary in November so it’s become a yearly tradition which I always look forward to enormously. I’ve kept our tickets from each year we’ve visited and they’re preserved happily in one of my scrapbooks. I’ve slowly been absorbing Christmas spirit and I’m hugely looking forward to my annual pilgrimage to the Cotswolds to celebrate. Winter does have a charm of its own though. Today on the next street down I came across a charity event for Demelza where participants were dressed as horses and there were various challenges to undertake, including a good old fashioned race, in full horse costume, on space hoppers. Naturally.
I’ve also been popping in to local pubs for mulled ciders and asking for my coffee extra hot to keep my hands warm for a bit longer when strolling. I’ve been acquiring bits and pieces to make a homemade Christmas wreath, wrapping presents in brown paper and adorning them with red twine and gift tags that I made out of last year’s Christmas cards. I’ve been trying out party food recipes including some goats cheese and caramelised red onion tartlets, jerk chicken and pineapple skewers and chorizo and halloumi bites.
So I am resolved to be more optimistic about what winter has to offer. I’ve managed to capture many valuable moments so far.