“Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves, We have had our summer evenings, now for October eves!” ― Humbert Wolfe
Autumn is my favorite season. A lot of people really dislike autumn, for a variety of reasons, and I know, I know, it’s the one that comes before that long, cold stretch of ice and snow that seems endless, which shall remain nameless at this time. But trust me when I say that there are many things to love about autumn.
This a time of year when we can really learn something from Mother Nature. Animals are wiser than humans in many respects, and never more so than when we observe their behavior in the autumn. Those that are able to go south, to warmer places, while those that stay put grow thicker coats, eat more, put on weight, and sleep for months at a time. The human race may have opposable thumbs, but I really think that animals got the better deal in this situation.
Even if you dislike autumn, this book may just change your mind. Author Jim Arnosky captures the great beauty and spirit of the season with gorgeous watercolor illustrations. While this book is written for children, I still recommend it to adults.
Although I lack the innate ability to grow a fur coat, I can still find ways to keep out the cold. Perhaps it’s a holdover from the time in my life when fall meant going back to school, but this is the time of year I like to start big craft projects and try to master new skills. Now that my garden is almost done, I have the time to start looking at afghan and quilting patterns, digging through my stash of yarn and fabric for projects that will rest cozily on my lap and keep me warm even before they’re completed. It’s also the time to start on any holiday gifts or decorations I may want to create.
Fortunately, I don’t have to forage for food to make myself ready for the upcoming months. Autumn also offers the chance to shift gears in the kitchen, so I dust off my slow cooker and dig out my bread recipes. The fruits and vegetables that are in season right now lend themselves to leisurely, lengthy cooking times, the perfect counterpoint to the crisper air and cooler temperatures outside.
While a part of me embraces the idea of hibernation, I find that this time of year lends itself to more sociable activities. Even though I’m not really into sports, I am a big fan of any occasion that encourages lots of eating, drinking and yelling at people that can’t possibly hear me. As such, I can’t help but feel some of the excitement and tension that’s so much a part of events like the World Series and the Grey Cup, or the beginning of the NHL and NFL seasons.
There are so many things to like about autumn, from the beauty of nature to the pleasures of being indoors. And, if nothing else, autumn is a time of year that is not yet winter.