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There’s so much to love about November

PUBLISHED: 11:31 29 October 2017

November is an under-appreciated month, says Keith Skipper.

November is an under-appreciated month, says Keith Skipper.

Archant

It’s time to join the November fan club, says Keith Skipper.

Although many of us were convinced at Sunday school how man may sort out the almanac but God makes all the weather, we still scan the skies, hedgerows and old books of country lore for possible pointers to harsh patches.

We remind ourselves not to sit on the grass in any month with an R in it. Garden crops inspection is another source of vital information. If your onions have thin skins, expect a mild winter. If they’re thick and tough, the going will be cold and rough.

Sadly, all this straightforward advice cultivated by the likes of Percy Thrower, Michael Fish and Mystic Meg can be lost in a lather of economic edicts and political prognostications designed to sharpen up the nation for a blizzard of tribulation.

We must prepare for a winter of discontent when the Dunkirk spirit flows again while we tighten our belts, dig for victory, love our neighbours and give thanks we’re all in this trench together.

I suggest it might be helpful to lock up all fiscal forecasters until the daffodils dance again. That’ll stop them looking and sounding so smug as they tell mere mortals weaned on making a little go a long way that is the price for living beyond our means.

It would also be useful if people stopped seeing poor old November as just a forlorn gateway to winter as darkness creeps up long before teatime and cold grey hands stretch out in the morning.

Peer through swirling fog across a landscape you took for granted last week. Trees turn into strange creatures raising crooked limbs in either threat or supplication. You love the bleakness even more when it’s time to leave it.

Welcome November with a new brand of appreciation. Join an unlikely fan club. Show the tail-end of a year smothered in economic woes can still lift the spirit and begin to make sense.

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