Last week, I sat at my desk wondering what to blog about. Outside, colored leaves skittered and played over the parking lot asphalt, the concrete of the deck, the grass and sidewalks. A heavy sky threatened rain overhead and the temperature hovered in the low-middle 40s. I contemplated Midwest autumn and the textbook case of it we had on our hands.
I went to bed with the temperature in the upper 30s and forecasts projecting mid- to lower-40s for the rest of the week. The next morning when I got up and opened my browser, the forecast said middle 30s all week with dips to the low 30s, and the temperature reading sat near the middle twenties.
Overnight the season changed. I realize it doesn’t wait for the solstice, and the meteorological seasons change generally around December 1, but this seemed so sudden, so stark. The bleakness settled with the cold too. The sky went from heavy to a leaden shield, as if no blue sat above it. The wind didn’t rustle leaves, branches and blades of grass, it whipped them and stood the flag straight out on the pole across the street. The deeper gray washed the horizon, and the whole world suddenly felt as if it had fallen asleep. Just like that. No real warning, no real heralding of the change. It just happened while I slept. I went to bed in autumn and awoke in winter.
Life seems like that many times, doesn’t it? Things just settle from out of the blue, an unseen bird landing on a wire. Only this is akin to an elephant landing on the wire, not a bird. And it roosts for a very long time indeed.
In truth, winter has been longer here. This was a pleasant, long-lived autumn for us. Normally the weather turns mid-November. We had an early, long one and it was warmer than others I recall. Still, I can’t help but miss it when it’s over. Happens every year. I look out and sigh heavy when the short days bring the hyper-chill and biting air.
But things only move forward. No matter how I lament the changing of the seasons and wish for just a few more weeks (years?) of autumn, winter inevitably, inexorably follows, pushing us into the cold dark slumber.
Then I remember it’s blazing hot summer in the Southern Hemisphere and become glad I live up here instead. Christmas in summer? UGH.
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