|Early Autumn in Auvergne // Personal picture|
It all starts with subtle hints and silent clues. A few brown chestnut tree leaves on the sidewalk. The first plums on the market stalls. Some stationary ad billboards creeping into the metro stations. A few more people in the subway tunnels and cars driving around the city. And, then, one morning...
One morning, the familar faces and voices are back on radio and TV. The local restaurants and bars have reopened. Colleagues reappear, tanned and fresh. All the talk is of the children going back to school. A text message informs me my violin teacher is back in town. There is a long line in front of the local activity center. Libraries are open. The boss is back. Leaves are littering the Nation square and hundreds of new books are released.
C'est la rentrée!
Even though the first weeks of September are, technically, still summer, I think these are one of the reasons why I love Autumn so much. I loved learning then and I love learning now. I hated the heat, nothingness, and absence of routine of summer holidays. I still hate the heat. The only place at school I felt comfortable in was the library. And here it was, opened again as I came back to school. The scent of new notebooks, the new calendar and planner. New subjects to learn about. I was that weird kid who liked school better than summer beach parties, and learning was my comfort zone.
C'est la rentrée!
I loved picking nuts in the neighbour's tree, walking under the golden sun of an Autumn afternoon, on the hills over my home town. The musty scent of the music school classroom. The hot chocolate my mother brought when she picked me up after the violin lesson, in the dark of early Autumn nights. The foggy evenings along the Rhône river as I came home from my evening job during my university years. The fresh notebooks I brought to the very first day of a new class. Maybe that's also why I fell for the Harry Potter series, he too detested summer and saw his return to school as a blessed period of the year.
I am a creature of falling leaves, fresh mushrooms, fiery colors of nature, hot chocolates and libraries. I am a creature of Autumn. September is upon us and that lifts my spirits in a unique way.