Slooow, Slooow, quickquick.

Autumn is here. Right now it’s sunny-ish out but there is a definite chill in the air that signals the end of summer and the beginning of autumn. It says, "Wear a sweater instead of that lightweight cotton." It says, "Soup is a good idea." It says, "Prepare yourself for more rain." It says, "Your skin is all ready so pale, let’s make it TRANSLUCENT."

This morning was one of those mornings I’d have back home where you know Halloween is coming and you have been in school for a few weeks or you expect the sun to go down earlier and earlier every day and pantyhose are a must. It’s just cold but pleasant and I all ready know this isn’t going to change and become an Indian summer, because, let’s face it, this is Ireland and the weather here sucks -- FACT. Time to break out the scarves. I won't dwell on the fact that Halloween is around TEN weeks away. No, no dwelling or crying.

Autumn also marks the beginning of activities. As a kid the summers are just aimless and joyful, but as soon as the autumn starts you have about a billion things to do. You’ve joined teams, and squads, and groups and you have to be organized and not get home until late, and eat dinner later and I always found this to be one of the best things about this time of year (besides the chowder). You become too busy and so involved you actually feel productive, in a way that work or marriage or crime never does.

To mark this, my husband and I started ballroom dancing classes last night at the Dance House in Dublin. I have to be honest -- we are not that bad. I mean, we're not exactly Fred and Ginger, or even Heather Mills and Johnathan Roberts, but for two people who had minimal dancing skills, we did a rather good job and now we can dance a slow foxtrot. And I mean SLOW. Like, old man in a walker kind of slow. But I still have nine of my toes so I think we win. In five weeks we will have an arsenal of moves to unleash on the unsuspecting wedding guest or dance floor patron. Watch out.

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Liz in Dublin