Monday, September 21, 2009

In a word: spectacular

Pretty much without fail, New England itself gives to those of us who live here an annual gift. It's why we stay here, even if we don't realize or admit that it's the reason.

We call it 'fall.'

Fall makes everything else worthwhile. It makes harsh, long, icy winters worthwhile. It makes 'mud season' and 'black fly season' (the two things we get in lieu of 'spring') worthwhile. It even takes the sting out of long, hot, dry summers that manage, generally despite the lack of rain, to be pretty humid (I don't even know how that's possible, but New England serves it up that way).

You'll hear varied opinions throughout the course of any year -- those who hate winter and those who live for opportunities to ski, those who wilt in the heat and those who drink it up. And it's popular to comment about spring's being the last bit of winter's agony that you have to get through until early summer comes.

But nobody dislikes fall. Nobody. People walk around happy, smiling, commenting regularly on the progress the leaves are making in their annual turn. Nights are cool (down even to the 40s) and days are warm and sunny (upper 70s today). Not. one. cloud.

We've been taking advantage. Long hikes in our local state forest (with plans written in on the calendar for several more), with room in our hearts and our car to take Biscuit along. Plans to pick apples, and stops at farmers' markets. Apple cider. Oh, how I love a hot cup of apple cider....

Soccer games played in conditions that make you just plain giddy to be alive, to be so lucky as to be sitting at the edge of the field, watching the boys play.

Plans and energy to cook interesting things for dinner, to start thinking about crafting again, to star-gaze. If you've been around here for a while you may have heard me ponder this sort of thing before: would I revel in it this much if we had it all year long? Would I notice it, notice the quality of the light and the scent on the breeze if that were how it was every day? I have to admit that I'd probably get tired of it, probably would take it for granted, probably would yearn to travel somewhere else for a change.

But for now I'm staying put, and loving every moment.


Natalie said...

Make Way For Ducklings!
Are they the same? From the book?
I am going to live through you... so keep us well posted on all things fall... the only season we are going in to is "fire season" with a promise of 90 degree days.

Lesley said...

Oooh _ I'm with you.
Autumn is the best season by a country mile.
We're coming into spring right now and that ... means .. summer ... is... coming. And I don't like it!
Well, I like it when it starts, and everything's flowering and you can sit outside for dinner and into the evening.
But by the end of January and the middle of February, when it's too stinkin hot even to sit out in the shade, and the nightly temps don't fall much below 75 F, I'm at screaming point.

Carin said...

Fall is wonderful, thank you for sharing the pictures of Fall in your area!

Jennifer said...

For anyone else who, like Natalie, is wondering if Make Way for Ducklings (by Robert McCloskey) is real, the answer is YES. Those illustrations in the book of the Mallard family making their way from the Charles River to the little pond in the Boston Public Garden are all based on how it really looks in Boston. And the little island where the ducks live -- that's real, and ducks really live there! Come visit me and I'll show you!

Juddie said...

Oh yes ... living in southern Australia, where we don't get a lot of autumn colour and we have such HOT, dry summers, I dream of visiting (or living in) New England....