Friday, 5 November 2010

Autumnal blues

It's early November but the trees have already shed all their leaves. The weather changed late on Wednesday night; rain has been falling on and off since, although the temperature has stayed warm (a high of +15C today).

Above: path leading down the Vistula escarpment from Al. Jerozolimskie to ul. Kruczkowskiego.

Above: avenue of trees alongside the Kanał Piaseczyński, between the British Embassy (to the right) and Legia football stadium (to the left). Trees are almost entirely bare too. The canal is an 820m-long ornamental waterway that runs between the foot of the escarpment under the Zamek Ujazdowski castle and ul. Czerniakowska.

Last dry run? On Wednesday I made the most of the weather by cycling from home to a meeting in Konstancin and then onto the office; 32km covered. Right: the singletrack trail that snakes along the southern edge of the Las Kabacki forest.

But it's that darkness that gets everybody; just gone 3pm today and everyone in the office was in a state of gloom induced by the darkening sky; despite the impending weekend it's still five months before the clocks go forward and we can leave work in daylight again.

And as I wrote two weeks ago, that is a very depressing thought. We have moved from that first half of Polish autumn - złota jesień ('golden autumn') into słotna jesień; the damp muddy greyness that stays until the Frost Gods arrive bearing with them the first snow.

I reach W-wa Jeziorki station at six pm this evening; it's been dark for nearly two hours already. Any pleasure I may have derived from walking home is entirely mitigated by the drizzle, the darkness and the fact that the entire route home is muddy.

2 comments:

Kolin said...

I find no gloom or depression in the shorter days. The variation is something to be embraced - it serves as another marker of the seasons, and along with colours, textures, and smells, gives each day its own special character. Tropical sunlight is lovely and powerful, but but there can be monotony in steady sameness. I enjoy strong contrasts. How else would we differentiate April from October? August from January?

Michael Dembinski said...

Seasonal affective disorder doesn't affect everyone, and those it does affect it touches in various degrees. I notice it, but it's not too debilitating in my case. Worst at around 3pm to 6pm, then lightens up.