There is an emanation from the heart

which cannot be described,

but is immediately felt and puts

the stranger at his ease.

~Washington Irving


Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.
It turns what we have into enough...

.........and more.

It turns denial into acceptance,
chaos to order, confusion to clarity.

It can turn a meal into a feast,

a house into a home,

a stranger into a friend.

~Melody Beattie


Don't be satisfied with stories,

how things have gone with others.

Unfold your own myth.
~Rumi


May my life be like a great

hospitable tree, and may

weary wanderers find in

me a rest.

~John Henry Jowett


Monday, 1 September 2014

The Nights are Drawing In

"THAT OLD SEPTEMBER FEELING, OF SUMMER PASSING......... 
OF VACATION NEARLY DONE, OBLIGATIONS GATHERING, 
BOOKS AND FOOTBALL IN THE AIR........
ANOTHER FALL, ANOTHER TURNED PAGE: 
THERE WAS SOMETHING OF 
JUBILEE IN THAT ANNUAL AUTUMNAL BEGINNING, 
AS IF LAST YEAR'S MISTAKES AND FAILURES 
HAD BEEN WIPED CLEAN BY SUMMER."
~Wallace Stegner 


Yesterday I found my first conker on Brasenose Lane which means summer is well and truly over, at least here in Oxford.


As much as I love summer, I have to admit I am starting to look forward to autumn evenings, if only to be able to start on the stack of books next to our bed.  When it's light until 10:30pm it's hard to pull yourself away from a beautiful summer evening to go to bed.  But as the days shorten, and by November when it's dark by four o'clock, it's no problem at all--meaning the pile of books will start to dwindle along with the evening light, as the nights draw in.

I'll never forget when I first heard Stuart use the phrase "the nights are drawing in". Since it was only August and I'd never actually heard anyone say that phrase out loud, I had a good laugh .  It seemed straight out of a Bronte novel and much more fitting for a Yorkshire moor on a winter's eve, than a lovely August evening.

Jowett Walk, Oxford, September 1, 2014



But now that it's September I have to admit the nights are drawing in.  As the days shorten and the light becomes more golden, autumn is one of the most beautiful times of year in Oxford. The students haven't returned yet, summer tourists have gone home leaving the streets are quieter and calmer, and the leaves and conkers are start to fall. Summer may be short in Britain but as the nights draw in, the autumn is long and golden.







"By all these lovely tokens,
September days are here,
With summer's best of weather,
And autumn's best of cheer."
                                                                   ~Helen Hunt Jackson


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