Well, this was certainly the most peculiar autumn yet! Not so much because of a lockdown (we didn’t really have one here in Belgium) but because of other virus-related consequences. However, I didn’t feel constricted or prevented from doing anything I had planned on. So this year’s stories of autumn still consisted of plenty seasonal activities. Even if some of them happened under special circumstances!

Apple Picking

One of my favorite autumnal activities, apple picking was rather different this year. Mostly because it didn’t include much apple picking per se, and we were completely alone in the big orchard! Naturally, special circumstances meant different hours and days for apple picking. After realizing it would be near impossible to do it with Grégory, I contacted the owner and asked if we could maybe drop by for a few photos one Friday afternoon. Being kind, the owners immediately agreed to our visit, no questions asked. So we drove to Neufchâteau and took many photos of apples and one remaining pear tree. The trees were bending under the branches of so many apples. And the apples themselves were so red and big that it was impossible not to bite into one! For more detail on the orchard Verger du Bout de l’Allée, head on over to this blog post.

Stories of autumn, a woman in a pinafore dress picking apples during autumn.
Stories of autumn, a woman in a pinafore dress picking apples during autumn.

Anniversary Dinner at Barisart

October 4th marked six years of us being together and luckily enough, we were able to continue with our little tradition of eating out. We returned to Barisart, our favorite restaurant hidden in the forest. At the beginning of October, restaurants in Belgium had just opened so we treated ourselves to a full lunch menu. I have officially never eaten so much food in any restaurant ever! And it was simply delectable. Entirely vegan and made with local produce!

First up, a cream veloute soup made of sweet potatoes and pumpkin garnished with roasted mushrooms and roasted seeds. Next up, we enjoyed a chickpea galette paired with some squash hummus and cashew “cheese”, lentils, mung beans, more pumpkin, and a million vegetables. And we finished it off with vegan panna cotta with persimmon compote, mango sorbet, and hazelnuts on top. In short, it might have been the best restaurant meal ever!

Visiting the Val-Dieu Abbey

After our second stay at Aux Quatre Bonniers, we drove over to the Val-Dieu Abbey. A place we visited many times before, it was impossible not to return on such a sunny autumn day. While we were probably one week too late for the big oak trees, we still managed to find a few charming corners. And we returned home with a jar of raspberry jam and cheese, both local products of the abbey!

Stories of autumn at home

While I was never one to ignore my own village during autumn, this year I focused on it even more. I noticed little corners that when framed right, would make for charming photos. I was revisiting my old favorite spots weeks in advance, to check on trees changing colors. And all of those places were a walking distance from home! I don’t think I had ever been this active during October, taking 5-6 km walks every other day. Miles certainly had no complaints this month!

Stories of autumn, a woman in a dress under a tree tunnel during autumn.

I also decided to explore some parks in nearby cities, on days when we had to go there anyway. In that way, we discovered the Parc de Séroule in Verviers. Which was amazing not only for all the golden trees but also for all the puppies we met during their daily walks!

As I write these words, autumn is slowly fading. There are more leaves on the ground than hanging from branches and the days are only getting shorter. We often wake up to clouds and fog that outlast the morning. Personally, this kind of weather always makes me want to delve into any novel from the Victorian period. Therefore, I’m not sad about autumn leaving since I love this period of moody foggy days. The foggier, the better, if you ask me!

Stories of autumn, a lake covered with golden leaves during autumn.
Stories of autumn, a woman in a pinafore dress surrounded by golden leaves during autumn.

And as autumn comes to a close, I do find myself delving more into books. Mostly because these days everything is being postponed once again. This leaves me with more free time for books and no feeling of guilt since all obligations and tasks are rescheduled. I’ve started a new book series, returned to another sequel, and am dedicating the rest of the year to Dickens and the Brontë sisters. And how lucky that it happens during my favorite time of the year for reading, those gloomy days of late November. This year’s autumn finished one week earlier than it usually does due to strong winds. Nonetheless, it was still as eventful and charming as ever. Until next year, my favorite season!

Stories of autumn, a path covered with golden leaves during autumn.
Stories of autumn, a woman in a dress sitting among golden leaves during autumn.
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Brigita Soldo

Travel Photographer · Creative Content Creator · Vintage & Sustainable Fashion Advocate

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