As a Queenslander of origin, I love autumn – mostly because we didn’t see signs of it in NQ! Living in Melbourne provides all the seasonal diversity I crave – sometimes all in one day! Autumn transitions us to the cooler months, and brings with it heart (and stomach) warming rituals.
1. Autumn leaves
As the leaves turn, the trees and roadways are decorated with a wonderful palette of warm colours. Melbourne streetscapes take on this new colour scheme that touches leaves, roads and gutters alike. The familiar sound of leaf blowers will soon be the norm as council workers clear up the leaf litter.
2. Footy season
The AFL season kicks off in autumn. That means, scarf-clad fans swarm to the sports grounds from trams, trains and pedestrian ways. Traffic is diabolical around the venues. Men in suits, families in groups, young and old … they all turn out to watch “their team” play. Flags are carried, faces are painted and songs are sung. The smell of sizzling sausages wafts down the streets leading to the MCG. Footy record sellers spruik their wares. By the end of the season, I will be happy for this to be over – but the familiarity of these rituals and behaviours is part of Melbourne’s identity.
3. Seasonal produce and menu changes
Melbourne’s food and wine festival is held in autumn. It’s a great time for producers to showcase their wares. Restaurants and eateries offer special meal deals to highlight their culinary exploits. Local markets are a great place to find ingredients to cook up a storm at home.
4. City smells
Autumn smells are more noticeable at night when the air feels thicker. Evenings are perfumed by neighbourhood fireplaces, snatches of sweetness from the last rose blooms poking through fences and delicate lavender as you brush past a bush. In café precincts, cooking smells and the aroma of roasted coffee hang in the air more noticeably.
5. Chill in the air
Scarves, coats, boots and hats reappear as we start to rug up for our autumn days. Mornings are fresh and evenings have a chill to them. It’s time for cosying up on the couch with a rug, hunting out new soup recipes and warm spicy drinks. It is prelude to winter, a time of change before the before the cold settles in.
What do you like about autumn?