In the heat of the summer, we sit around our patio table with friends discussing the pros and cons of the climate we live in. The men with their frosty beers in hand and the ladies with their cocktail du jour . . . talking about everything and nothing really, as the kids run about with water guns and strange costumes.
There is no end to the running. Hence, the cocktails.
We love these summer evenings more than anything else. This time with friends when it's 9 o'clock and the sun has yet to set. In fact, it is still casting its rays down, making everything that warm golden color you only find after July 21st.
But they're fleeting, these moments of yellow dusk, and we all know it. And I'm the one saying, "I'm done with the hot! I'm done with the humidity! I'm done with the kids staying up so late just because it's light outside!" They all look at me with daggers in their eyes . . . how could you? They'd just as soon move to Arizona where it is all summer all the time, and leave me here in the land of rain and gray skies all alone. Traitors.
But on an evening walk the other night, I noticed something.
Although just a few weeks ago we were sitting on the deck, basking in the evening sun, it was now gone. Gone, like at 8:30 gone. The long shadows cast dark spots on the sidewalk beneath our feet and it was getting difficult to see our daughter, riding her bike in front of us. The bugs were biting and even though it was still warm, a chill was causing the hair on my arms to stand alert for the first time in a long time.
It's coming. Fall.
For the first time in my life, I was a little melancholy about the arrival of what I've always referred to as my favorite season of the year. Usually I can be found at this time towards the end of summer jumping in excitement at the mere thought of wearing turtlenecks and jeans instead of shorts and flip flops. Usually I'm digging all my fall scarves and coats and boots out of the closet, preparing my umbrellas and giddy with the anticipation of standing in the rain and watching the boys play fall sports.
But something is different all of a sudden.
I think it may have to do with the fact that, a'hem, I've got a middle schooler now. Not only will there be three different children in three different schools, but the glaring truth of the matter is that I will also have to get up before the crows and I'm none too happy about it. You see, I am not a morning person.
I've had eleven years to prepare and apparently, there is no amount of preparation that can ready me for the day that I drive my middle-schooler to his destination at 7:30 in the morning, let alone in the dark.
I know my friends will tell me, with regret in their eyes at the passing of summer, that I must be happy now that the seasons are changing, that I was just saying I wished it would be dark at 9pm and stay that way until 8am -
And I will say . . . be careful what you wish for.