There is something magical that happens when the clocks go back. Don’t get me wrong — I’m no fan of the switch, whether to winter or summertime (although if I had to choose, it would be winter, which feels somehow more natural to me).

But since we moved here, I’ve noticed that the late fall season has something special to the light, and the time change somehow moves me to get outside just as darkness falls in all its splendour.

I experience a secret thrill in walking outside and seeing all the lit up windows. They are like tableaux vivants, welcoming frames of life seen from the street. I see a lamp or a screen or shelf with books. A coat on a hook or silhouettes of people in a kitchen. It gives me a feeling of being welcomed and warm. Perhaps it is close to the Danish idea of ‘hygge’.

So out and about I’ve strolled in our little town for an hour or so twice this week just as the sun set. The moon and the sky do some amazing things this time of year. I wish my camera could capture all the nuances.

I have a recent iPhone but haven’t really figured out how to do all the fancy stuff with the camera. I tried time lapse but that was just a blurry video. Then somehow I lucked into a night mode that worked.

There is something almost eerie about the fact that the dry leaves still cling to the trees in the light of the streetlamps. Nature hasn’t yet fully battened down its hatches; the grass is still green. I know it won’t last long. Soon it will be too bitterly cold and wet to be out for a walk at the end of the day.

Plus, there’s all the magic of living in a very Swiss town with its safe street life and painted façades. I still struggle with the language and doubt I’ll ever be fluent but I am picking up and decoding more words. One easy one inspired the title of this post: schön. Lovely, beautiful, good.

And that is how I’m feeling now. How are things with you?


  1. margaret21 · November 12, 2021

    I’m discombobulated because I don’t deal well with this clock change. 5.30 is far too early to begin the day! Also, if we must have dark evenings (which I also dislike) at least they ought to have the decency to be crisp and cold, not warm and muggy. As you see, I’m in Grumpy Old Woman mode. Normal for November.

    • MELewis · November 13, 2021

      Grumpy old woman? I know that mode well! 😂 I am an early bird anyway so the mornings don’t bother me. It’s just the whole silly disruption, and for nothing! Hope you get some crisp and cold weather soon. We have just settled into our typical grey fog.

  2. Garfield Hug · November 12, 2021

    Thanks for a tour! You new iphone has done a great job with the photos. The night shots are gorgeous. Merci beaucoup! I hope I got that right in French.

    • MELewis · November 13, 2021

      Your French is perfect! 🇫🇷 Glad you enjoyed the photos!

  3. Dale · November 12, 2021

    Beautiful pictures, Mel. And I am so bummed to have to work as the sun goes down. By the time I leave at 5 it’s almost pitch black. I was saying to someone that I will have to take advantage of this beautiful light – and it is beautiful! on the weekends… I love the word schön.

    • MELewis · November 13, 2021

      Thanks, Dale! I completely understand how you feel when you are chained to work until the best part of the day is gone. Lucky for me I am self-employed so flexible in my office hours. Hope you get to enjoy a schön weekend!

  4. Becky Ross Michael · November 13, 2021

    Such great photos!

  5. Vanessa in France · November 14, 2021

    I agree that twilight at this time of year has something special about it. However, I hate it when the clocks go back. I much prefer summertime. I suffer a little from Seasonal Affective Disorder and seeing the light fade at 5 pm doesn’t help. I realise, though, that for those who have to get up early to commute wintertime is preferable, since it’s lighter in the morning. Great photos.

    • MELewis · November 14, 2021

      Glad you enjoyed the photos. If only we could enjoy an extra hour of light on either end! Realistically, I don’t really care which time we keep but I hate the change more than anything. I think the SAD stuff affects me a little too. November is a hard month, bring on December and the year-end festivities!

  6. acflory · November 14, 2021

    I know midnight is supposed to be the ‘witching hour’, but to me, nothing beats the Golden Hour around sunset. The quality of the light really is quite different. It makes my heart skip a beat, it’s so beautiful. Enjoy and thank you for the lovely photos.

    • MELewis · November 18, 2021

      It’s funny Meeka, those exact words, ‘witching hour’, echoed in my brain as I was out for that walk. I even thought about the fact that it’s supposed to be later but it felt exactly like that! I was really on the cusp of when that magic light of sunset was fading to dusk and there was something half magic, half scary about it. Now we’ve had several days of gloom and fog, so it’s starting to feel like a dream. Glad you enjoyed the pix! ☺️

      • acflory · November 19, 2021

        lol – I hope you get another spectacular sunset soon though. And yes, the pics were great. Keep ’em coming. 🙂

  7. Garfield Hug · November 14, 2021

    Thank you😊

  8. Colin Bisset · November 18, 2021

    Very evocative, and lovely pictures. I used to like the change of clocks when I lived in London because of just what you describe – the lights of the shops, the sense of rushing home from work to the cosiness of home (when the gas bill was paid, that is). I wonder if there is a word like hygge in the Swiss dialect because it’s that kind of country…

    • MELewis · November 18, 2021

      Glad it brought back fond memories. I will ask about the vocabulary. If there isn’t a word there should be one (but I’m afraid the dialect is still well beyond my understanding in most instances!).

  9. Ally Bean · November 20, 2021

    Beautiful photos. All seem to be almost mystical, in a place so serene it’s difficult to believe it exists. You’ve found a lovely place to live. Schön, indeed.

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