Oct 1, 2012

R is back

The signs are clear. The leaves are turning, flocks of Canadian geese are flocking our front yard for their winter break, night temperatures are dipping into the 40s and even 30s with crisp morning frost on the ground. Yep, the boys of summer are gone. Fall has come, and it came quickly.

But hey, it's already a month since the R is back. As in back in the month. An old grandmother's wisdom from Northern Europe, that is still frequently used in Holland to indicate that summer is gone, that it's time to start taking your daily multivitamins (or cod liver oil in earlier days). To indicate that the oysters and mussels are back in season. Apparently it was used for similar reasons in ancient England, with a 1599 quote from Dyets drie dinner: "The oyster is unseasonable and unwholesome in all months that have not the letter R in their name".

These oyster rules do not seem to rule the US season, because you can get awesome oysters pretty much all year round, even in a landlocked state like Illinois. However, some of the mussels we had in summer were tiny and tough, but luckily for us not too unwholesome.

I'm not sure how common or uncommon the saying of the R in the month is in the United States, but the fall theme certainly is all over. Even in that good American tradition of theme decorating everything. Today actually was a theme celebration for me: I have 15 years of service with my company. It doesn't feel like it, as I only joined this good old Illinois pharma company two years ago when it acquired the good old Belgian pharma company I worked at for 9 years in Holland and 4 years in Atlanta. But my 13 years count towards several benefits, not in the least fall theme decorated cookies. Here's to 15 years..............

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