Everywhere you look, at this time of year, you see that the earth has little left to give.
Summer's vibrancy and even the warmth of the autumn colours is fading - there is hardly any energy left.
All is pared back, to its barest form: the trees betray no sign of life, the birds quieten down and the hedgerow's creatures retire into hibernation.
This is no bad thing. It is not death, but sleep. The earth will rest and restore itself over the forthcoming cold months. When the light returns in spring, everything will wake up with renewed vigour. This is how it is supposed to be.
I too long to hibernate - to cosy up indoors and rest - yet each morning I have to force myself awake in darkness and work through, in spite of my body's natural instincts.
Do any of you struggle with low energy levels at this time of year?
It is a season I would dearly love, could I put work on hold and focus on hearth and home.
Five more weeks before a longed-for Yuletide rest...