“Is not this a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love – that makes life and nature harmonise. The birds are consulting about their migrations, the trees are putting on the hectic or the pallid hues of decay, and begin to strew the ground, that one’s very footsteps may not disturb the repose of earth and air, while they give us a scent that is a perfect anodyne to the restless spirit. Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
[Letter to Miss Eliot, Oct. 1, 1841]”
― George Eliot
The daily prompt asks us what our favorite season is, and which one we like the least. Anyone who knows me will know that I absolutely love Fall (Autumn) the best. I can’t even explain why. There’s just something about it that makes me feel so… alive! The weather isn’t too hot or too cold, the days are neither too long nor too short, the colors are super amazing even if they don’t last long. Fall has that slight chill in the air to remind us that Summer has fled and Winter is coming. It is the time of transition. This is the time of the Fall Equinox, it brings balance. Not like Summer when the days seem endlessly hot, nor is it like Winter when the nights seem endlessly long. Fall is fleeting, there never seems to be enough time to do what wants to be done. It also has my favorite holiday Halloween!
Fall is the time of harvest. It used to be, in the days when people fended for themselves, a time to take stock and remember that there might be difficult times in the months ahead and there is a need to prepare. But it was also a time for celebration if the harvest was good. A time to let loose one last time before bunkering down for the long Winter. Fall is the time when we (used to) till the land under and let it rest, which also gives us pause to reflect on the end of all things. Fall is when the bears go into hibernation, animals prepare for winter, and the Earth begins to sleep. It’s the time when we begin to “winterize” our things and put away our Summer accessories. It is the time of preparation, of anticipation.
Fall is when people dare to taste bold flavors, when cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg come out to play. It’s the season of pumpkins and squash. It’s the season of Jack o’ Lanterns and Indian Corn. Gourd decorations are everywhere! It’s also the season where people tend to go a little overboard with the pumpkin flavoring. Now I like pumpkins. I like pumpkin soup, pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, and even pumpkin cookies (sometimes), but sometimes people (they know who they are) go a little too far with the pumpkin and pumpkin pie flavoring. Don’t get me wrong, I love a pumpkin spice latte just as much as the next person, but you’ve got to draw the line somewhere… You’ve just gotta. Just saying. But that is an aspect of Fall, pumpkins…
Fall is also the season when one of my favorite berries comes in season — cranberries! I love cranberries. They are native to the United States, and they are way too tart to eat in their natural form, but mix them with a little sugar and cook them a bit and they’re good! I like cranberry muffins, cranberry sauce (homemade of course), and candied cranberries. I like cranberry juice too, but one doesn’t have to wait for fall to have that.
Also, soup, and stew, and hot cocoa are plentiful this time of year. And chili. Anything warm to take the bite of the chill out of the air. Bon fires are also popular this time of year. Now that the hubs and I have a house and land, we’ve discovered we also have a small fire pit just to the side of the house. We’re thinking of building that up so later in the year when it is colder we can light fires and go sit under the stars with some marshmallows or hot dogs and just chill out for a little while. Fall is good for that too. They have kits for that. Though I understand that this is something people do in the summer too. Who knew?
Speaking of Summer, the daily prompt also asks which season we like the least, and I’m here to tell ya, it’s the one we in the Northern Hemisphere are in right now. Summer. I hate it with a burning hot passion that will never die. I loath Summer. It’s hot, the days last forever! and I am always miserable in the summer. Always. I burn rather than tan so going out into the sun is just too much bother. If the sun is in a certain position in the sky, I get migraines, so I have to wear my sunglasses all the time (even then it doesn’t always help), and I hate to sweat. Hate it. I never would have survived the heat in the South without air conditioning.
Here’s a fun fact, central air conditioning makes my breathing worse. No one knows why, but it’s been like that since I was a kid. My stepdad bitched about it all the time. I try to hold off turning it on as long as I possibly can. And as much as I hate the heat, I don’t feel it as much as other people do. I’ve had friends and family burning up in my house and didn’t even know it until they finally snap and say, “Can you please turn on the air conditioner?” And I’m all, “Oh, are you hot? Is it hot in here to you?” I didn’t even know because I was perfectly comfortable. Weird huh?
Anyway, I have found that Summer up here in the Pacific Northwest isn’t as bad as it was down in the Southern United States. But it still gets hot. I hate hot. Luckily, where the heat started some time in late April down South, it doesn’t start until ’round about now (mid June) here in the PNW. I’m guessing the heat will start to end some time in early August too, whereas in the South it could go well into late September. So while we still have Summer here, it’s a blessedly shorter season. Therefore, I don’t really hate it as much… not so far. Ha!
Turn, Turn, Turn by The Byrds