Sunday, October 2, 2011

Welcome Fall!

Larry and I have spent the past week at a campground near home working on our camper and just hanging out. We have a camping excursion planned for later this month with Brian, April and the three grandkids in Gulf Shores, Alabama and we are getting our travel trailer ready for our first camping trip with the kids in the new camper. Gulf Shores is a little less than an hour's drive from home and we'll be camping in Gulf State Park. It has recently been rebuilt after Hurricane Katrina sort of re-arranged the pines and picnic tables in 2005. Unfortunately, that area catches a lot of bad weather and since it's near the Gulf of Mexico is a prime target for Mother Nature's wrath.

When we woke up this morning the first thing we noticed was how cool it was. My nose was really, really cold. In a dog, that's a good thing. For humans, not so good. So Larry got up while I pulled the wubie up around my nose and he found the small, ceramic heater we have for cold snaps. They are safe and, in fact, probably safer than turning on the propane heater in the camper. In pretty short order the little heater did what it was supposed to do and got the place heated up nicely. Shortly after that the familiar beep, beep, beep, beep, beep of the coffee pot let us know that our favorite morning brew was ready for us to drink! So life was good!

Having a true Fall/Autumn in the deep south is a "some time" thing. Some times we get it, some times we don't. We who have lived here for most of our lives can remember going trick or treating at Halloween with shorts and tee shirts on under our costumes. We would be lucky if our chocolate candy survived the heat back to the house where we dumped the plastic pumpkin to ooo and ahhh over our treasure. Daddy usually came in to "inspect" our loot and frequently offered to take some of the choicer pieces off of our hands.

Thanksgiving is another holiday that we have been known to celebrate with the windows flung wide open or even cranking the thermostat down to a lower notch so the masses huddled around the groaning table don't perish from the heat. I have spent more than one Christmas trying out a new bicycle or skates in summer clothes, all the while hoping and praying for just one teeny-tiny flake of snow. Never happened. Well, I guess I could concede that one Christmas in 1993 when we had a Family Gathering planned at Pensacola Beach, we did get a tiny smattering of big, fat, wet snow flakes on our trek down to the beach. And it did turn very, very cold on Christmas Eve. The snow was gone before we got to the beach, however, melting the instant it touched the ground.

So having a real cold snap, colorful leaves, the smell of a fireplace puffing an announcement all over the neighborhood that the Gaineys are having the first fire of the season and a hot, steaming cup of cider are cause for real celebration in these parts. When we get to experience REAL fall we send up a loud hosanna! The crisp air, the bluer than blue skies, the faint rustling of leaves are the first inkling we get that the seasons are getting ready to change. They are so rare and yet so welcome. It's enough to make you hug yourself with joy! In fact, I think I saw two squirrels doing a happy dance this morning as they were busily burying acorns in places they are sure to forget later this winter.

I don't know what the weather is like where you are, but as you read this, I hope you're having the signs of fall/autumn all around you. (I realize that for people in the Southern Hemisphere that your seasons are reversed from ours, so just go with me here!) Drink in the beauty that is there and let it refresh your soul. Our calendar year is winding down, but then some of our biggest celebrations are fast approaching. So while the life cycle is ending for many things, the time of joy will be here, too. It really is a bitter-sweet time of year. Take the time to appreciate the regularity of the seasons and all that they offer. I know that this year we're really going to have a fall and I am just so glad to be here to enjoy it! I hope you enjoy it, too.

Happy Trails,


1 comment:

  1. I wish fall would hurry up and arrive in Southern Illinois! There are some visual signs, but it was hot as heck today, and the air conditioner is now running. And although I'm looking forward to the first snowfall, that will be enough for me. The Farmer's Almanac claims that it will be a colder winter here than usual. NOT looking forward to that!


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