Although I was expecting it, because I had noticed the ethereal haze surrounding the aging moon last night, today was the first proper frost of the year. Well – in Worcestershire at least!
When people ask me what my favourite season is I used to struggle to come up with an answer I truly believed in, until I realised sometime over lockdown that really my favourite season is the beginning of each new one. There is something rejuvenating about the change in the landscape and weather, no matter if it is getting warmer or colder – and although autumn still has a little while to go I definitely think we got our first taste of winter today! So, all in all, I was looking forward to my morning walk.
As I struck off down the road, trying to get the circulation going and enjoying the sight of my breath against the winter sun-soaked fields, I gave myself over to the sort of gentle musings that are so encouraged by a vigorous walk. I decided that perhaps one of my favourite moments of the year, alongside the first day where you can wear shorts and not regret it, is the first day where you can get out your woollen jumpers. After a few months of frustratingly fickle temperatures meaning you have to be constantly taking things off and putting them on again it is a great relief (in my opinion at least) to be able to settle in to a cosy cable knit in the morning and not have to take it off again until you can slide into bed in the evening.
Having exhausted the topic of winter knitwear for the time being, I noticed nestled in the frost laden brambles by the side of the road a few brave blackberries, that seemed to be clinging on as late as they possible could. I don’t know if you have ever eaten a frozen blackberry straight from one of those packets, but I can tell you that a frozen blackberry from the bush tastes far far better! My faithful hound seemed to agree as well – blackberries are a particular favourite of his.
Just past the half-way point in my walk is a small lake in the bottom of a wooded valley, it used to feed a mill a little further down the road, but I’m not sure what it produced. Either way, it was particularly picturesque this morning, gently steaming in the morning sun. Sky (the faithful hound) likes to spend some time here smelling the smells and nosing around the neighbouring paddock, and I am always grateful for the small bench where you can sit and enjoy the sounds of the squirrels limbering up for a day of nut-hunting, and the ducks combing their feathers into place. Or whatever it is ducks and squirrels actually do in the morning.
Another of my favourite winter-y sensations is the feeling of having very cold ears, nose and hands. Perhaps this is weird? Oh well! There is just something about it that makes one feel that one has really achieved something. The only problem is of course the changes of temperature are not very friendly to your skin. So on this particular morning I was especially grateful to the little wooden bench as it gave me an opportunity to delve into my pockets and apply some much needed lip balm and hand lotion. On cold, frosty mornings I always find that any sensations seem to be magnified, so the subtle, natural scent in the travel-sized Hand Lotion from Martina Gebhardt (incidentally I find this 30ml squirty bottle is ideal for keeping with you, even if you don’t use a bag) was a very pleasant and unobtrusive addition to my little winter wonderland.
As the cold started to make its way up through the soles of my boots I hurriedly put on a last bit of Martina Gebhardt Lip Balm (also in a pocket friendly 15ml tub) and set off, homeward bound, to the warm embrace of a cup of coffee.
Well I suppose there is only so much you can write about a shortish walk on a frosty morning, or more to the point there is only so much you can read about someone else’s walk on a frosty morning! We would love to hear about any of your favourite outdoor experiences, or which Martina products you find most helpful in the changing seasons, so please do let us know by email, on Instagram or Facebook!