Anyone out there a fan of Hawksley Workman? Days like today and yesterday — cold, grey — make it impossible not to think about his lovely song ‘Autumn’s Here’. Have a listen.
Certainly, there are lots of things to like about the fall. I like the smell of crispy air. I like brightly coloured leaves — especially kicking them around when they are knee deep on the ground. I like rediscovering my sweaters and scarves and hats. I like the idea of making soup and other cozy meals.
But I hate being cold.
And man, oh, man… I feel like I’ve been cold for days! It’s a funny time of year, only cause it still feels a little early to turn the heat on (only a month ago we were wearing shorts and sandals!). Instead, we end up shivering in our apartments wondering how it got so chilly so fast. Truth be told, we turned on the heat in my building (we were all freezing) yesterday and it’s made a huge difference.
Yep, I’ll take summer over winter any day.
There is, however, something about the fall that makes me feel particularly compelled to curl up with a book and a cup of tea and dig into some of the ideas that lurk between pages. There are a stack of ‘em before me now: some are books related to my thesis project. Some are waiting to be read as part of the class I am auditing this semester (something I’m glad I am doing — mostly because it is forcing me to delve into material I might not otherwise get to). But there’s also a stack of reading that falls into the guilty pleasures category if you’re in grad school: novels that bear no relation to your academic work. Magazines. Newspapers. Yum.
Sometimes I forget that as a graduate student, it’s ok to read all day long. I must admit, I’m not always very good at it. I feel like a lot of my day goes to administration, email writing, and general out-in-the-world life stuff. I’m not always very good at slowing down for long enough to sit and absorb words on a page.
Fall’s arrival, however, may be just the push I need to slow down and spend some quiet time with myself and a few dozen books. And a cup of tea.
And a thick sweater.