The fallen leaves and mild days of Autumn have started giving way to the colder, harsher days of Winter. For most of us, Winter also means that assignments will begin to pile, and exams are fast approaching.
Winter has always been my second least favourite season, just pipping the worthless trash-heap that is Autumn (fight me, Halloween fans). The only thing that usually put Winter ahead of Autumn was Christmas (or Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Festivus). I always loved Christmas: the buying of gifts, the getting of gifts, the warmth of the fire and the warmth of the close family & the people around you. It was just indescribably wholesome – a true merry time indeed.
But as the years went on, less gifts were bought, less gifts were got, the fire got colder and the family got smaller. And let me tell you: if you’ve never broken or dislocated something, or ever had a serious physical injury, you don’t know the pain that the cold brings to damaged bones. So even Winter, with the holly jolly Christmas at its heart, started to lose its charm. If you’re reading this, and for whatever reason, be it broken bones, broken homes, general melancholy or a solid case of the bah-humbugs, this is resonating, then this is the editorial for you.
For the more physically broken of you, it’s crucial to start dressing properly now. Layers, warm socks (don’t get me started on socks), scarves, hats and gloves, now is the time to start putting them on to shield you from the cold this time of year brings. For those of you who don’t have a home to go to, for whatever reason, now is the time to look to friends. If you’re living in student accommodation, consider doing a house/apartment Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Festivus. Many don’t going home for the season, for a multitude of reasons, so they might be in the same boat. Keep an eye on your queer, mentally ill and international student friends: this time of year can be hard for them, for different reasons, so make sure they’re okay too.
If you’ve got the bah-humbugs, or you just don’t see the point in the Season, don’t worry: I’m not a who from whoville, I won’t try to make your heart grow three sizes this day, but I will say that because of the weather, now is a harder time for lots of people less fortunate than (most of) ourselves. Donate to charity – particularly ones to do with the homeless – and if you don’t have money, donate your time. If you’ve got a spare tent from [insert festival here] going, consider donating it to a homeless charity, they really (sadly) need them. And if you’re reading this, and you have neither money nor time (nor tents), know that those groups and charities are there for you too.
Most of the preceding lines can be summed up with this: mind yourself, and mind those around you (but seriously – warm socks, dude).