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The Wind-Down To Winter


Well, it’s getting colder in Yorkshire. There wasn’t much of a summer by my standards (my criteria for a nice spell of weather is at least 7 days with not a cloud in the sky – haven’t had that for a few years). But whatever decent weather we had is on the way out. Just last week it all changed. Strong winds, clear skies and a large drop in temperature. The nights have been drawing in slowly over the past month or so, but it seems to have suddenly accelerated so it’s dark by about 6.20pm.


I know when Autumn is upon us because I find myself wearing different clothes (and before you laugh I’m not like Bart Simpson – I do change my clothes every day – I mean that I change the type of clothes I wear). During the Summer months I wear either t-shirts or light, long sleeved tops so that I don’t get too hot. But come Autumn I break into my large collection of sweaters and start to work my way through them. I’ve got everything from reasonably light cotton tops to the sweater equivalent of a Wooly Mammoth coat complete with too-long sleeves and a collar that needs to be folded over a couple of times before I can see out of it (I love that top, maybe I’ll post a photo of it).

But of all the seasonal shifts I must say that I dislike Summer to Autumn the most. Okay, you get to wrap yourself up warmly and snuggle down in front of the fire. For me Autumn is the pregnant pause before Winter, and it’s not much good for anything. You can’t go snowboarding because it hasn’t snowed yet, but you won’t get a suntan because it’s cold, although not cold enough to wear a toasty down jacket. Winters are pretty wet, cold, miserable affairs in Yorkshire and that’s about all you’ve got to look forward to at this time of year. It’s almost like the world is saying “right, you’ve had it easy, now prepare for several months of misery”.

Maybe I’m being pessimistic. And you’re probably right. I was just starting to get in good shape on my mountain bike, and along comes Autumn to make the days so short that there isn’t enough daylight to go out after work and it’s too cold to wear my fetching short-sleeved biking top. I suppose I’ll just have to hold on and bike on the weekends and wait until I can go snowboarding in a couple of months.

I know that us Scots are supposed to be hardy and not complain about the cold, but that’s not my point – I can take the cold. It’s just the in-between weather that does my head in. Give me two complete seasons. It’s either red-hot and not a cloud in the sky. Or it’s ice cold, there’s loads of snow and not a cloud in the sky. Am I being unrealistic? Probably.

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Creator of John's Background Switcher. Scotsman, footballer, photographer, dog owner, risk taker, heart breaker, nice guy. Some of those are lies.

7 Comments Join the Conversation

  1. You should feel lucky to even have the whole “seasonal change” thing – in Minnesota we have two seasons…winter, and July 15th. I would take advantage of the long winter to get some boarding in, but Andy has shamed me out of it. Apparently it’s not fitting for a wife and mother of (almost) three to be out shredding with the boys, sigh. 🙁


  2. On t’other side of’t Pennines it does seem to get it worse than here in Leeds for some reason. Everyone knows Manchester to be the wettest city in England (which was cool when we were weaving 24/7 as it stopped the cotton breaking) but now that industry, like most others, has gone, why doesn’t the rain just go play somewhere else.

    We did used to get some top snow though – and Pendle Hill has got some excellent mini-slopes for sledgeing (no ski lifts so you don’t want a 5000 feet climb before each run do you).

    But yeah – having had light from about 3:30 till going on 11 to sunrise nearer 7 (it’s still dark when I finish clubbing some days!!) and dark at 6 is a culture shock EVERY year…. You’d think we’d get used to it. But every winter, I actually forget what it’s like to go out of the house in a tee shirt. And those redundant coat things that hang in the hall all summer – what’s that all about?


  3. Typical, I write an article slagging off autumn and it’s a beautiful, sunny day outside. Not a cloud in the sky.

    Next summer I’ll write about how miserable and cold it is…


  4. To be fair it was a pretty good summer – we only had two or three days of rain in August and September. I should know, I was out there enjoying it courtesy of Cyberoptics!

    And autumn brings excellent climbing conditions on the grit and beautiful colours on the trees (you’ve seen my photos of Ceuse …).


  5. you should try living on a small island with a huge hill in the middle… we have bizarre weather, it can be glorious sunshine in the north and deepest winter in the south… lol it truly is four seasons in one day over here 😀

    ah the seasons… there is not one i hate, summer is my favourite but only cos thats when everyone is smily and wearing hardly any clothes *grin* …. i like darker nights, makes me feel snuggly and excited about xmas coming up 🙂

    oh yeah and you did realise we live in the UK hon? hehe… maybe we should tow all our islands south a bit?



  6. Yes i did, it’s a small world… Maybe we should shift the UK into the Caribbean, just north of Antigua. Then I’d stop complaining. Honest!


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