Harbingers of autumn

A spot of rain in Richmond, and maybe it’s helped break the back of this heat. I’m catsitting up here for a few days. A change of scene and it has propelled me to bed early.

Henry is pretty low maintenance. He has a catflap and he lets himself in and out if he has to, although he is largely much happier if he can get somebody to open the door for him. Currently he won’t let me stroke him but he will make me feed him. He strides in and shouts until his bowl is full. “Close your bedroom door or he’ll wake you in the night for food,” Tanya tells me. And he will, even if his bowl is full.

So… I’m winding down here with another fun pussycat. It’s so much quieter here than in my flat. I don’t notice the main road when I’m home, but I notice the lack of it when I’m not. And there are creatures here. A giant house spider was staring at me when I was brushing my teeth. Great big thing. I got web in my face when I walked into the bathroom. So long as it doesn’t creep me out it’ll help cut down on the late summer flies though. I prefer to live and let live unless somebody is freaking out in which case I’d move it somewhere. Nature does what nature does, and that great big thing is going to avoid me but might eat things that want to cut little square holes in my skin and drain my blood.

Something unusual happened in Chelsea last night. With all the heat and the lack of rain, the plane trees must have been suffering, and maybe they felt like there was going to be a storm. On my street and the streets around me, they did a huge overnight shedding of old dead leaves. It was a still night. They just dropped about fifty percent of their foliage. Bergman was covered, and the pavement was crunching with them. Strange to see.

The leaves, the spider… All these things indicate autumn to me and I’m not done with summer yet dammit. But I can feel the air temperature dropping, and the trees and spiders are obviously feeling it too by their behaviours. I haven’t seen any crane flies yet thank God – they’re the true harbinger of autumn. It’s only a matter of time.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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