‘Dear, dear Norland,’ said Elinor, ‘probably looks much as it always does at this time of year. The woods and walks thickly covered with dead leaves.’
‘Oh!’ cried Marianne, ‘with what transporting sensations have I formerly seen them fall! How have I delighted, as I walked, to see them driven in showers about me by the wind! What feelings have they, the season, the air altogether inspired! Now there is no one to regard them. They are seen only as a nuisance, swept hastily off, and driven as much as possible from the sight.’
‘It is not everyone,’ said Elinor, ‘who has your passion for dead leaves.’
Sense and Sensibility
I have a lot of love for the Dashwood sisters. The story in Sense and Sensibility is focused on romantic outcomes, but as with any other Austen, it’s the love between women that makes it worth reading. This is what she observed so well. I adore these two women, both on a little learning curve, in the most defining chapter of their lives. Marianne and Elinor are incredibly different personalities, and I love them both for their quirks, but what always makes me smile are these little moments, where their differences and their friendship go hand in hand. Their different approaches to life and difficulty are beautifully contrasted.
And while I realise it might seem an unseasonable quote to choose, little autumn images have been in my mind. Much as I appreciate Elinor’s practicality, I admit to having some of Marianne’s romantic fondness for the season of dead leaves, and am perhaps ready for the summer to move on…