I never called it fall, it was Autumn.
‘Fall’ is an americanism, like gasoline, or fuel instead of petrol.
I find I speak less and less english these days, as the world adapts to a global language, that no one seems to be able to master. Intonation all over the place. IT support reading from scripts they were instructed to speak with a smile so they sound friendlier over the phone, but they don’t understand the words they are saying…
I don’t seem to say petrol anymore. It sounds so formal and old fashioned, like saying ‘telephone’ or television’ rather than just ‘phone’ or ‘screen’.
But I had held on to ‘Autumn’. Something about the word held dignity, poetry.
But this year, it is the Fall.
Because this year I fell.
It was the equinox a few days ago, and we are currently living in a campsite. Its a temporary solution until ‘the season’ officially ends and we can go back to where we started the year. The year I fell.
In England, by this time of year the weather has definitely opted for cold and rainy, with the occasional, and very welcome, golden sunset to sporadically offset the grey monotony. The last glimpses of light as the year closes in.
The temperature here in Tuscany, however, and light make no sense to me. It’s still warm, its still sunny and we are camping… I feel like the season is clinging. Like a woman approaching menopause who quickly gets a jab of botox before anyone notices she is ageing. Or an balding man with a comb over. Summer is afraid to let go, lest the fall happens.
I on the other hand, am aching for this change, this acceptance. It is time.
The seasons this year have been in reverse. Spring was for death. Now I need the world to reflect this death. I need to see life wither away, dry up and be swallowed up by the ground. I need all the excesses of summer to be tampered and silenced. I want green to turn to brown. I want brown to turn to grey. And I want everyone to retire into their homes and be quiet forever.
Let us sleep in a mass grave beneath the surface of consciousness and dream of darkness.
Of course, Autumn, the ‘fall’, is not death at all. Its almost as if it is life reborn. The season reaps the harvest. Cornucopia abundance. It is a dance of wealth and merriment. I always loved autumn. Chestnuts and mushrooms, Halloween, Guy Fawkes, the births of my children.
I like the winding down and closing up. I like fading into Christmas and snow. And I like the promise of spring to come.
The seasons bring with them whimsical messages for us to attune to, if we care to…
Today we made homemade gnocchi from sweet potato. Little rituals that follow the tide.
Relief and hope, hardships and fear. We cycle through them, they cycle through us.
And then one day they stop.