Much to my chagrin but to the delight of others, summer has ended, and fall has begun. Closing our pool signifies the end of summer for me and always causes me to feel a little depressed. It’s not that I don’t like fall in all its beauty and the holidays that are observed in it, it is just that I dread the transition to the monster that follows it...old man winter.
Fall, also known as Autumn, is one of the four temperate seasons. Outside of the tropics, fall marks the transition from summer to winter. Day length decreases and night length increases as the season progresses. Fall traditionally starts with the September equinox (21 to 24 September) and ends with the winter solstice (21 or 22 December). Popular culture associates Labor Day as the end of summer and the start of fall. Pools close and old summer traditions such as wearing white are discouraged after Labor Day. As daytime and nighttime temperatures decrease, trees change colors and then shed their leaves. Before the 16th century, harvest was the term generally used to refer to the season because of the harvesting of crops. However, as more people gradually moved from working the land to living in towns, the word autumn, as well as fall, began to replace it as a reference for the season.
Fall is a time for fun Halloween activities to include costume parties, trick or treating and Meade County’s own Field of Screams and Nightmare Forest at Otter Creek Park. But fall is also a time for reflection as we celebrate Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving Day. It is a time to remember the men and women who serve or who have ever served in the armed forces for our country. It is a time to remember those that made the ultimate sacrifices for our freedoms. It is a time of harvest for the farmers. It is a time to remember our blessings and be thankful for them.
Fall, especially in poetry, has often been associated in theory with melancholia. The endless possibilities and opportunities of summer are gone, and the chill of winter is on the horizon. Skies turn gray, the amount of usable daylight drops rapidly, and many people turn inward, both physically and mentally. It has been referred to as an unhealthy season.
However, there are many aspects that people love about fall that do not support the theory above. In fact, quite the opposite. I took a poll asking people to tell me what their favorite things or activities were in the fall and here are their answers.
The weather was the number one aspect that people said they loved about fall, particularly the cool crisp air, the smell of fall, bonfires, and sweater weather. One of my cousins said that the cooler weather reminds him of growing up in a log cabin in Hill Grove with his family. Another cousin said there was just a different feeling in the air in the fall. The next was the beauty of the leaves and trees in the fall. I cannot think of anything that can match the splendor of the leaves in the fall. However, one of our grandsons told me that he prefers when the leaves fall off the trees so he can see where not to hit while playing disc golf! The number one favorite fall activity was going to pumpkin patches, particularly Huber’s Farms in Indiana and Roberts Family Farm in Meade County, to pick out pumpkins and then carving them. Hunting, which play a big part in the fall season in Kentucky, was another favorite. Other favorites were hayrides, apple picking, apple cider, fall festivals, baking pumpkin pies and bread, fall craft fairs, soup and chili, football games, pumpkin spice lattes, fall decorating., Halloween costume parties and Thanksgiving.
A friend said one of the best aspects of fall for her was the special needs ministry that held trick or treating and hayrides at the campgrounds in downtown Brandenburg. Everyone decorates their campers for the event. She said it warms her heart to see the special needs children of all ages come and enjoy a night out. She summed up fall best by saying it is just a beautiful season to experience.
However you spend your fall, may it bring you many blessings and joy!