The Crispness of Autumn

On this, the last day of September, the early signs of autumn already show themselves: The air is a bit cooler, the sun looks weaker, the leaves begin to show their final colors.

I love the fall. I like the transition to sweater weather, the promise of the upcoming holiday seasons, the fun of cider-and-donut season, the simple joy of Halloween. It’s a reminder to slow down, to enjoy what’s left while it’s still here.

As much as I disdain birthdays, my mid-September birth marks the beginning of an action-packed period that stretches until the new year. From mid September until Halloween, the name of the game is seasonal change. From Halloween until Thanksgiving, it’s “preparation for winter.” Thanksgiving to Christmas is a magical time of anticipation. Christmas to New Year’s prompts thoughts of annual renewal.

Of course, January 2 heralds the long, desolate slog until spring.

The scene from the coffee-shop window amuses. I see, for example, guys walking down the street together; one’s in shorts and a tank top, the other wears jeans, a shirt and a pullover fleece. Only in Michigan can both get-ups be equally acceptable simultaneously.

In any case, I’m taking today off to relax a bit. Perhaps I’ll retreat to the veranda for a cigar and a glass of wine. After all, autumn’s nigh — savor it while it lasts.