Friday, 6 September 2013

Automne, Autunno, Autumn

We were able to have dinner outside from 21 June to 31 August this year, a short period of time but we love this tradition of dining on our terrace looking at the Rideau Canal.

Since 1 September the weather has been sunny but cool and in the evening chilly. The days are noticeably shorter now so we are slowly moving towards Autumn.

The word Autumn in English comes from old French Automne and it seems that prior to the 16th century the word Harvest was much in use since most people lived on the land and Harvest meant that time of the year, Season, when most food is harvested. Only as of the 16th century when more people moved to Cities and learnt to read and write did the word Autumn gain prominence.

With Autumn new activities take place, Thanksgiving falls on Sunday 13 October, meaning that we decorate with various types of coloured corn, pumpkins and a variety of squashes. Last year I found a pumpkin which was a bluish silver colour, a heritage variety. There is a lot of so called Heritage vegetables on the markets now and many people love this new choice. Just outside Ottawa, the Gatineau Park has spectacular colours and it is wonderful to drive up into the hills and on a sunny day see the multi-coloured trees.

Of course many will cook a turkey and have the traditional stuffing and vegetables, potatoes, brussels sprouts, carrot, turnip and squash. I do not know what we will do. It all depends who is in town during this long weekend.

We are booked for our cruise in November from Rome to Seville, with stops in Sorrento, Trapani, Barcelona, Valencia, Gibraltar, then across the Strait of Gibraltar and along the Guadalquivir river to Seville. We also plan a side trip to Granada. This cruise is to celebrate our 35 Anniversary. We had such a great cruise last year from Amsterdam to St-Petersburg and Stockholm through the Baltic Sea. This will be our gift to each other and a wonderful way to celebrate. AZAMARA is tailoring the cruise for our anniversary and giving us little extras to make it memorable.

This will be our second cruise with AZAMARA, smaller ships, called mid-size with 700 passengers and higher level of amenities and service. The food was excellent and the wine list impressive, I also liked the fact that they poured drinks not measure them, so you got a nice stiff drink to make any sailor proud. We have never been on the super-size ships carrying thousands of passengers and I do not think we would like it. Also from a point of safety, I prefer a smaller ship. We were also able to dock in town where larger cruise ships had to dock often far away in sea ports. One final point that sold me on AZAMARA was the number of Canadians on crew on board, a nice touch.

Azamara Quest


  1. You Easterners get such lovely fall colours down there, compared to what we get in the West. Although what we have is nice too. But you get many more reds and oranges.

  2. what a lovely life you have.

  3. Thanks for the wonderful autumn color photos.

    The cruise sounds wonderful. I did not realize it was to celebrate your anniversary. Congrats!! What a wonderful trip you will have.

    1. Thank you. I am sure it will be great, I love ships and going to sea.

  4. I wish we had an autumn..but the nice fall weather is about 45 minutes long and if I ate outside on my patio my brains would bake in 20 minutes.