'At the risk of sounding like a 'man flu'-affected member of the opposite sex, I am a bit alarmed that, as I write, it is well over a week since I first woke up feeling ropey and yet I am still coughing and spluttering like a 60 a day-er.'
So autumn has finally arrived after that freakish period of prolonged summer madness that threw nature and wardrobe-planning alike into confusion.
And how has my immune system chosen to welcome the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness? With my first cold of the season.
At the risk of sounding like a 'man flu'-affected member of the opposite sex, I am a bit alarmed that, as I write, it is well over a week since I first woke up feeling ropey and yet I am still coughing and spluttering like a 60 a day-er.
My concern has not been alleviated by news from the World Health Organisation (I feel for their press office - they never seem to have any good tidings to impart) that worldwide flu vaccines are several billion doses short of what is needed to stand a chance of avoiding a global public health disaster.
I will try not to think about this when surrounded by the germ-ridden inhabitants of London's public transport system. The journey into work already resembles 40 minutes in a doctor's waiting room, such is the amount of coughing, spluttering and sneezing.
And at the last count, my boss, my mum and at least one nephew had all gone down with something, too.
It won't be long before Lemsips and cough medicine are being seized on as eagerly in the HSJ office as the goodies on our infamous 'bird table'.
I am also doing mental preparation to prevent myself throttling those who claim to have had the flu when they have been off for a day or two with a head cold.
Meanwhile, I have been reliably informed that a combination of zinc tablets, vitamin C and Echinacea tea can ward off the bugs.
So I am off to the health food shop to add to my daily pill-taking rattle count (medicinal rather than recreational).
I will report on the results.