August-September, rather than December-January, always seems to me like the end of one year and the start of the next. The summer has finished but the new academic year is beginning. One year's triathlon training and competing has ended for G, but there are now next year's races to enter, and a new training schedule to plan. Tired, dusty sandals are put away and leather boots are taken out and polished to a conker-brown shine. The summer glut of berries is stacked up on the shelf as jam, and I am dreaming of dishes made with lentils and rabbit and root vegetables.
I love this time of year. That new pencil case feeling leaves me full of energy and plans for the year ahead - and this month I am adopting another feature usually associated with the end of the calendar; that of new habits and firm resolutions to Do Better.
The NHS website tells me that I should be aiming to drink at least 1.2 litres of fluid daily, but despite starting the day well with a cup of tea, and then a cup or two of coffee an hour later, I often stop there and fall well short of this target on most days. When I was in France I bought three glass water bottles, for just two euros each, to remedy this. They now live on the bottom shelf of the fridge, chilling tap water for us all to drink.
My Mum and Dad had several of these glass bottles in their fridge in France, and they were responsible for me drinking much more water than I usually would at home. Properly chilled water is much more appealing than tap water, and more 'gluggable' somehow. The bottles look nice on the kitchen table at supper time too.
And I am hoping that my starting this new habit at a non-traditional time of year will means that it doesn't fall into the 78% of resolutions that are 'doomed to failure'. It's only the 7th September, but I'm doing pretty well so far.