The last fortnight seems to have taken us well and truly into autumn. While temperatures remain in the low to mid 20sC during the daytime, we are now regularly waking up to mist-covered hills (sometimes even no view at all, a complete white-out until the breeze moves the cloud on) and the sound of rain doing anything from gently pattering on the skylight to full-on deafening hammering.
After what felt like the longest, hottest, driest summer we've ever experienced, it seems like a series of challenges trying to remember how to dress appropriately for cooler, wetter weather; trying to time the laundry cycles to coincide with brief spells of sunshine to dry the washing on the line; trying to recall our fire-lighting skills; and we're back to the autumn/winter battle of forever wiping up muddy paw prints from the floor before turning around and finding fresh ones where we've just wiped...
But we are embracing the autumnal weather, loving the fresher, damper smell of the air, and the magical, atmospheric views that the clouds and mist create.
|Sunshine after the rain.|
|More cloud and mist and rain.|
|24h of rainfall.|
|On the left - bottled water. On the right - tap water the morning after the mother of all storms. Which would you prefer?|
|Suddenly it's this time of year again.|
|The cyclamens are out in force.|
|We are already seeing some growth in the vetiver.|
|A cm or two of new growth on some of the plants.|
In between the rain, various computer-based work duties, and some lovely social evenings with Mara, Franco & Donatella (at ours for a Thai curry); with Paul, Veronica, Donatella, David & Sarah (at Paul & Veronica's for an amazing beef/salmon dinner courtesy of Paul); and with Samantha & Mario (at Mario's nephew's restaurant in the pretty mountain village of Cutigliano about an hour's drive away - such a treat!), Stuart started work on replacing part of the flue of the main wood burner and repairing the plasterwork above it, we had a mammoth joint effort at spring (ok autumn) cleaning our own room (the one room in the house that always tends to lose out on any cleaning efforts!), and we've completed the new herb garden.
|New piece of flue in place.|
|Spring (autumn) clean!|
|Work progressing on the herb garden.|
|Stunning head of sunflower seeds.|
|Nature's beautiful geometric patterns.|
|Should be enough to keep the bird feeders topped up this winter!|
The week ahead promises to have a little more dry weather and sunshine in store (after a wet start, that is) so we're hoping for a little more opportunity to get outside and get stuck in!