05 October 2007

forgotten fall

September and October are my favorite months usually- crisp air, bright leaves, a chance for scarves, coats, and wool. This year though, it seems like it has almost never happened, with the nearly endless rainstorms, and the high winds of last week that ripped off most of the leaves before they had a chance to go colorful. Last year it was a proper fall here, and the trip to Vermont would take care of anyone's yen for foliage.

This year it's been Norway where I have watched the season unfold properly, over the course of four trips there since mid-August. It starts with the train ride into Oslo from the airport that displays all the right markers- alarmingly bright orange punctuating misty hills, stands of trees clustering against deep red-painted barns. In the town outside Oslo where I go for work, it's the smell of fall rain hastening the leaf decay, the fog-hazed fields all trimmed of their August hay crop and lying golden and stubbled. Days that start with finger-chill and mist in the river valley, then warm up to almost short-sleeve temperature, and then close around you cool enough to cause the puff of white in your exhale and make the stars twinkle crisply.

If only it were like that sometimes, just sometimes, here in Iceland this year. Like others, I've been remembering the views of other autumns, when there were chances to appreciate the size of the landscape here and how marvelous the light is when it chooses to be. I know that weather will come again someday, but after what feels like two months of non-stop rain, I'm starting to plan delicious non-Iceland escapes to visit foreign friends with glee. It's a tough love sometimes, this Iceland.


tsduff said...

Well, I was going to suggest that you really ought to right for Iceland Express or some such publication, because you are so enormously talented with your descriptive writings of Iceland... LOL but then I read today's post of "escape from Iceland"... ha ha. California falls are mild, but still the chill is beginning to make me partially close my bedside window which is normally flung wide open.

Anonymous said...

Fall hasn't been business as usual here either. I live in Montreal which is a hop, skip and a jump from Vermont and New England and we have been experiencing summer weather! It is 25 degrees celius here today which is unheard of for this time in October. This is more like June and July and I'm am considering taking a dip in the pool.


Anonymous said...

Same here in Toronto. I've been lamenting the lack of Autumn. Some of the trees turned but with the dry summer and the return of hot weather the leaves are just drying up. The temp is up and down and creating some nasty air conditions similar to the ground smog you get on very hot summer days. We had frost in August but that was just a tease. The seasons appear to have shifted a month later and that is a little worrisome. Odd weather once in a while isn't a problem but this is three years in a row of goofy weather. I'll trade you the cosmopolitan Toronto weather for the gale force winds of Iceland any day. I'll be there soon I hope...
my blog

Visionary & Medium Extraordinaire said...

It was a lovely 85F or 29C in Boston today. Quite nice.
Yes I agree Iceland is a love hate relationship. You gotta be able to withstand the long winter, yet relatively mild temps compared to snowy New England. And you have to be absolutely in LOVE with the Icelandic summers and again, relatively mild summers.
I prefer the warmer temps, but I miss the Icelandic light

cK said...

Indeed. October is a glorious month in northern latitudes. It's rather strange here in Minnesota this year, though. Rains and high winds are stripping the leaves too soon, and the trees are wildly inconsistent in turning colors. I think it had something to do with so many hot days this summer....

But I'm going to the Farmer's Market this morning. It's a gorgeous gathering there in October, even when raining. Very festive.

hexe said...

I too miss autumn, but here in Mouseland it is near 90 and horribly humid. Makes me miss my time in Maine. Hope your rain stops and the heat here finally subsides.

Djaddi said...

Hey, at least it's finally nice out today :).

I was in Norway last week, and we drove from Oslo to Trondheim. It was so nice to see all those trees, and their changing colors, after being in Iceland for a while.

On the other hand, their sheep are not as cute and don't run when you honk at them. So things even out.

SOe said...

I missed the autumn last year. Then I went to Germany for 2 week the leaves were still green and then I came back no leaves at all on the trees. This year I had two days of autumn with beautiful weather and wonderful coloured leaves on all kind of plants.

Rose said...

Hmmm...how about a house exchange? I'd love to see the Northern lights! We live in Richmond, VA: 2 hours from DC by train, 1 hour to Williamsburg, 1 1/2 hours to Blue Ridge Mtns., 2 hours to the ocean. And, lots to do in Richmond! Car included; big house.
90 degrees F tomorrow. Unusually warm fall here. In Virginia the only thing you can count on is changing weather...like Iceland!

ECS said...

tsduff: we got a bit of a break from the rain over the weekend and it was finally properly autumnal. I LOVE that weather.

sadly it's back to the rain again.

Steph: I've been hearing the same thing from a friend who lives just over the border near Burlington, that her fleece jacket is going unused and instead she's wearing shorts and sandals. That's all wrong for October.

canadaposter2: so many Canadian residents visiting here these days! I just looked at your blog and am curious now- have you visited this country yet or does it just seem like the right place for you based on what you have read and seen?

SB: We had a weekend worthy of proper autumn-love and I am happily slightly more adjusted. But I am sure that the rain today is going to continue for another couple of days. I have to spend a lot of time weaving now so I guess it's good.

ck: Farmers markets in autumn are AWESOME. Jealous.

hexe: I have to say that I'll take 2 months of rain over a floridian "autumn". Hope your dreams of escape happen soon!

djaddi: another Iceland dweller escapes to Norway for a bit of fall! Isn't it beyootiful over there these days?

soe: were you here over the weekend? I feel somewhat redeemed after that. It was Outside A Lot for me on Saturday and Sunday.

rose: well, the problem with all this rain is that the northern lights are completely invisible. I have only seen them ONCE since it got dark again this year, which is quite miserable. I feel deprived of the best part of winter here.

Anonymous said...

Hello again, thanks for visiting my blog. I agree that it is starting to seem that I am already in Iceland. My heart and thoughts certainly are there but alas I've yet to make my visit. I thought I would get this out of my system by writing about it but all I've done was to research even more and think about it all the time now. I'm as convinced as I could possibly be that Iceland is where I need to be. I'll take your crazy weather and high costs to get to the luxury of clean air and a populace with open minds.

Not that there isn't beauty and wonderful people here as well but things are changing and I'm not liking the direction we seem to heading for.
dreaming of iceland

Vikingisson said...

I just realized that I can use my gmail account for commenting. So no more Nafnlaus... I am that crazy Canuck with a burning desire to be in Niceland.

After yesterday's scorching heat wave today we're closer to normal and having a lot of rain. 19C is still warmer than it should be but nicer than 30C. Yesterday I had to find an Autumn photo location for my kid's homework. I felt silly taking pictures of Autumn in my shorts and sandals...

SOe said...

@ecs: I was around Snæfellsnes. Saturday was really bad but Sunday was grandios. Especially the Hraunfossar was beautiful with its coloured trees around: http://www.flickr.com/photos/now-in-iceland/1525463930/