October 22, 2002

Late Roses, Early Snow

Think of something you wouldn't normally buy for yourself, my wife suggested on our anniversary, at a loss as to what kind of gift to get for me. So I thought and I thought, until, the next day, the right something came to mind: a domain name, a web-hosting package, and a Content Management System.

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Saturday began in a drably cold way that matched my hungover mood. We'd been out to O'Leary's, then to my colleague Mr. A_______'s apartment for a housewarming party. I'd had a few beers and a bottle of wine, which was as far as my limited drinking ability would safely carry me. My sociability was sadly limited too, and I left before midnight, not because, à la Cinderella, the magic fairy-dust was about to wear off, but because I just wanted to go home and go to bed.

I spent a couple of hours installing the Movable Type software into my newly-acquired webspace, and was delighted to find this was perfectly achievable even for a hungover novice without a proper FTP application.

By the time (mid-afternoon) I walked down to McDonald's to grab us a bag of greasy food, the rain was turning to sleet. When the time came to take Dog for his afternoon walk in the park, the half-frozen slush lay in a thickening film over the grass, rendering it a weirdly pale pastel shade of green. Soon the sleet had turned to snow. We thought it would be a passing flurry, and would likely melt straightaway, but a half inch of it stuck on the grass, on rooftops and windowledges, on car windscreens, and also on last few tenacious roses in bloom behind the Trinity Church.

But autumn is also a time of colour, and of death. At the end the music thus turns into a festive dance con grandezza. Maybe it bears the echo of a sarabande to the dying splendour of summer - or as T.S. Eliot put it: 'late roses filled with early snow'. (Einojuhani Rautavaara).
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This, in our third autumn in Sweden, is the earliest in the year we've seen the snow arrive. We're hoping this is a one-off, and not a foretaste of a harsh winter to come.

Posted by misteraitch at October 22, 2002 12:14 PM