And speaking of surreal.

I'm seeing a play with my students in London tomorrow, and I came up a day early in order to scope out another show--and, at long last, to get to the London Library and all its labyrinthine stacks to do some work. On my walk from the hotel to the Underground, just when I reached the postmodern hulk that is the Brunswick Centre, I noticed a tree that has gone into blossom again because it's been so warm here. All week I've been noticing this: trees that are fringeing into leaf again at their branchtips, hedges and bushes that have shot out fiery gold or blood-red extensions of themselves, ready for spring. I have worn my winter coat precisely twice this fall, once in October and once in November. Even crossing a footbridge over the Thames tonight, I wasn't cold in my spring overcoat and a wool scarf.

I find that part of me is already bracing for the extreme winter weather that I have no doubt is going to get unleashed on us within a few weeks.