The haze and the watery sun and the leaves drying out and losing their color have not been bad weather, but they’ve been a little depressing. (The time change making it dark at six doesn’t help, either.) I had to think of this passage that starts one of my favorites, A Moveable Feast. Hemingway’s trick for the November depression was to leave Paris and go somewhere even colder, like the Alps. Nice. If I ever live in Paris, I’ll let you know how it works.
“Then there was the bad weather. It would come in one day when the fall was over. We would have to shut the windows in the night against the rain and the cold wind would strip the leaves from the trees in the Place Contrescarpe…Now that the bad weather had come, we could leave Paris for a while for a place where this rain would be snow coming down through the pines and covering the road and the high hillsides and at an altitude where we would hear it creak as we walked home at night.”
And then there’s this in the next chapter:
“When we came back to Paris it was clear and cold and lovely. The city had accommodated itself to winter…and on the streets the winter light was beautiful. Now you were accustomed to see the bare trees against the sky and you walked on the fresh-washed gravel paths through the Luxembourg gardens in the clear sharp wind. The trees were sculpture without their leaves when you were reconciled to them…”
Maybe the trick is just getting reconciled.
No, the trick is getting reconciled in Paris.