For a SAD* old git like me, 31st August is literally the most depressing day of the year. There are two different dates given for the start of autumn. One is the meteorological date which falls on 1st September, the other is the astronomical date which this year falls on 23 September. I always go by the former.

After a summer as good as this one, the last thing I want to happen is for it to end. Particularly in recent years, I have come to regard September as the beginning not of autumn, but of winter. I see the autumn in dreadfully negative terms, with all the leaves starting to fall from the trees, the nights becoming cooler, the days becoming shorter. And for me, winter carries on until 1st March the following year which just so happens to be my favourite day of the year.

To be fair, September is often, though not always, one of the better months of the year. With the exception of last September, when it chucked it down for most of the month, the weather man, even though there isn’t such a person, rages against the dying both of the light and the heat. Evenings spent supping wine in the back garden may require the wearing of warmer clothes, but they are still possible, as are BBQs and sitting outside the pub.

I have managed to approach this year’s approaching autumn in much better mental health which is what some of us old people refer to as a ‘Brucie bonus’ (ask your parents, kids) and whilst I am not looking forward to discarding for six months or so my shorts and three quarter lengths, I can live with it, as I suspect can the female population of South Gloucestershire beyond.

So this year, I am neither sad nor SAD. Long may it last.

*Season affective disorder (To be fair, I haven’t been diagnosed with it; yet).