Next!

Well, August is closing at last, and we’re getting into my favorite season of all.

I used to have a lot of baggage with saying autumn was my favorite season. First, there’s the whole school thing—I always liked school and genuinely miss it now, but it’s hard to go around talking about how the start of a huge semester is your favorite thing on earth. People start looking at you strangely.

Then there’s the whole winter is coming thing, and I’m not a huge fan of winter either. Not with the icy roads and the rationed sunshine and the way my feet NEVER stay warm. I like winter during the holiday season, but by January 15th I’ve got my fix for the year.

But if you can separate those things out of the equation, you’re left with just autumn. And it’s sort of magical here in Michigan. The nights are already starting to get chilly. People put out autumn wreaths and scarecrows on their front porches. The cider mills open and suddenly donuts are everywhere. People have campfires and you grab hoodies before heading outside. The leaves turn. You carve pumpkins and make Halloween plans. The earth smells musky with fallen and forgotten apples mouldering into fertilizer. People start making soups and meatloaf again. And lots of apple pies.

I like it.

When I lived at home, my younger brothers and I would throw half a dozen blankets and pillows in the bed of my little red truck, drive out to the field at my parents’ home, and go stargazing. It was mostly an excuse to eat cheese and crackers and get our faces cold in the wind, but it was part of the rhythm of life there, and I miss it when I think about fall.

Yesterday, when Fig called—now in graduate school an hour away—we talked about forming a luncheon club with the three of us again. That will also be an excuse to eat cheese and talk books and sit around together, so I guess some things don’t really change.

In October, Carl and I are flying to Denver for his sister’s wedding and taking the two days following to drive up to the Rockies and see if we can catch some leaves in the act. We’ve done a couple of local weekend trips this year, and we went tagging along to Florida with my fam in the spring, but it’s been a while since we flew somewhere on our own.

I’m looking forward to it.

Other than that the pleasures of autumn will be all the low-key ones I like best. We’ll get donuts and sit by the river watching the mallards paddle around, like we did when we were dating and checking out our compatibility in really important areas like who we considered the best movie villain of all time.

And maybe one of these cooling days we’ll find a realtor who returns our phone calls and buy a house.

Maybe.

I’m looking forward to it.

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3 thoughts on “Next!

  1. Ah, Kit! You and I definitely share some genes. I CRIED when I couldn’t go to school in the fall anymore because I adored school. Once when I was in high school, I threw up. The teacher told me I could go home if I wanted to, but I said I was feeling fine and didn’t want to go (which was the truth…must have been something I ate). At any rate, I never lived down the amazement of fellow school boys, who were always wishing they didn’t have to be in school!

    And the winter thing…Jan. 15th sounds like the perfect time for the winter act to end!

    Speaking of lunch clubs, I’m thinking to try to come visit in October when the leaves turn…like mid to later. Got any dates that look good to you?

    Will call…

  2. I am not feeling ready for fall this year. In Michigan, summer started in June, but we were out west where it was still spring, and summer didn’t start for us until July. It’s still summer in Oregon, but it’s turning cold here, and it feels like I lost a month. I’m trying to get excited for the leaves to turn, for trips to the cider mill, for pumpkins and mums and hay bales on the porch. I do really love fall, but I just kind of wish it would happen a touch later than it is.

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