november done

november skyNovember is quite a month. We in the north bid farewell to autumn and don hats, scarves and gloves to shake hands with old man winter. If we resist at the beginning, by the end we are resigned to the onslaught of Christmas and all that entails.

In many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, autumn is still under way at the beginning of November. A number of highly coloured leaves still cling to the trees. It can be wet and windy but not really cold yet. By the end of the month the trees are bare and its cold! For a week or more, I have not ventured out without winter clothing.

In the Southern Hemisphere, of course, spring is well and truly sprung, like May here.

As always, it has been an action packed month. Here are some of the more notable events. November 1 is All Saints Day, formerly All Hallows Day. Thus Halloween, the evening before, now opens the month. November 2 is All Souls Day, Día de los Muertos(Day of the Dead) in Mexico, where the whole month of November is especially dedicated to praying for the dead. Britain and New Zealand celebrate Guy Fawkes Night, the anniversary of the failed Gunpowder Plot, on November 5. In Indonesia, November 10 is known as National Heroes Day. Remembrance Day is celebrated on November 11 in the Commonwealth of Nations and various European countries(including France and Belgium) to commemorate World War 1 and other wars. It is known as Veterans’ Day in the United States. In India, Children’s Day is celebrated on November 14, the birthdate of  India’s first Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. On November 19, 1493, Christopher Columbus discovered Puerto Rico. Día de la Revolución, or Revolution Day, is celebrated in Mexico on November 20. Transgender Day of Remembrance has occurred on November 20 each year in the United States since 1999. The United States and Puerto Rico observe Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday in November. For Christians, Advent begins on a Sunday in the last week in November. Scotland celebrates St Andrews Day, its official national day, on November 30. It has been an official bank holiday since 2006.

So a nip of good Scotch whisky is in order today, because tomorrow we must dust off our Santa hats and our cheesiest grins, and go forth and be jolly, at any expense. Tis the season!

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