For those of you curious about the photos in my previous post: the boats are Dartmouth, but taken from the castle and looking upriver. The second picture, taken into the sun, is Prawle Point, and the last is Start Point - from the west (so taking the footpath that takes you away from the path to the car park).
Here we go again - September. No more reading in the garden till gone nine in the evening. No more waking to the song of the mistle thrush. No more playing in the river or hunting for wild strawberries. Soon it will be crumpets for tea and the shops full of sparkles.
I'm not, as you know, good at winter. And I'm not good at picking up the rhythm of life in the autumn. I love the anarchy of summer, the feeling that anything can happen any time - just because it's light and the sun is shining (some of the time). Now the schools are back the term-time routines have resumed and I am, unwillingly, picking up the threads again. The writing group, the book group, the choir.
I know I need these rhythms. However much I love the freedoms of summer life can't be like that all the time. I need to wake up and know that, just because it's Tuesday, I need to get up and get out on time. I don't have to like the discipline of it. But I know that, if months stretched ahead of me without any sort of routine, I might slip into complete lethargy and become the doddery old soul in the corner drooling into my tea long before the years dictate.
Which is why, reluctantly, I am embracing September. It is an opportunity - I know that - to be more purposeful. And I do my best to see it like that. Even so, I can't help feeling as I did at the beginning of every school year as a child: do I really have to do this just because it's good for me.
Yes, I do. (At least until January, when I can go AWOL again!)