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I woke up this morning to an odd sensation: I was shivering.

In the summer, I don't put blankets or comforters or bed spreads on my bed because it's just too damned hot. My under-sized air conditioner units are already taxed nearly to the limit just keeping it merely livable in the house, so sleeping with anything more than a sheet seems...rather counterintuitive.

The power went off during the night and came back on at 6:30 and when I woke up to the chorus of the neighbors' alarms, I was actually cold. It was 69° in my bedroom, according to my trusty atomic clock/thermometer.

That chill is definitely a precursor of autumn, my favorite part of the year. There are about three weeks each year where daytime temperatures are warm but not too hot and the nighttime temperatures drop down into the "chilly" range perfect for sleeping with a window open and a light blanket. The sky sometimes takes on a color I have heard described as "October Blue," but which I simply refer to as "That shade of blue." That deep, rich, cool blue color that practically screams "autumn" and seems crafted by nature as the perfect backdrop for the brilliant colors of the leaves.
That deep, rich, cool blue color that seems crafted by nature as the perfect backdrop for the brilliant colors of the leaves.
The autumnal tri-week period is better to me than the vernal one because in the autumn, we're coming to the end of long months of sweltering temperatures, and even though it's still 70°F to 75°F outside during the day, it seems cool compared to the 90s and 100s we've been having throughout August and September. Those lower temperatures are a welcome reprieve.

There's just something...ineffable about autumn. It conjures up a lot of things for me.

That shade of blue; cloudless skies; orange pumpkins; brightly colored leaves; bales of hay; smoke coming out of chimneys; dying lawns; harvested vegetables and grains; no biting, stinging insects.

Pumpkin pie spices; hot chocolate; wood smoke; the crispness of "winter" haunting the corners of your nose; the rich aroma of hot, hearty soup on a chilly day.

The wind rustling dried leaves in the trees; the "rain" of old leaves falling to the ground; the skittering as they're blown across the ground.

The nip in the air; the thrill of warm sunlight hitting exposed skin that is chilled by the ambient temperature and the breeze; breezes just chilly enough to bring tears to the corners of your eyes.

A huge pot of vegetable beef stew, some cornbread, and a big, honkin' slice of chocolate—or pecan—pie for dessert.

The anticipatory chill in the air; the exquisite, elicit joy of sleeping late, curled up in a warm bed on a crisp morning; the warmth of a hot cup of tea or hot chocolate on a chilly autumn day; sitting in front of a fire in your favorite chair, curled up with a good mystery novel; knowing that the holiday season is almost here, and with it, all the gatherings with friends and family.

Soon, it'll be Halloween, and before you know it, the Christmas carols will take over the airwaves and the last vestiges of that autumn feeling will be buried under ten thousand repetitions of "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer."

But in the meantime, every time I walk outside or hear the wind blowing through the turning leaves or feel my eyes tear as a chilly breeze hits me in the face, I'll hear Vince Guaraldi's "Skating" in my head.


Atheists Are People, Too  Antispam  


( 5 hisses — Hiss at me! )
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 12th, 2007 05:12 am (UTC)
It's purely HTML. I played with it until I got it right on an old (VERY old) post that no one would want to see, anyway and then started using it, once in a while. Basically, it looks like this:

<span style="width: 10em; margin: 0.25em 1em 0.25em 0; color: #5555dd; background: #000033; font: italic 1.3em/1.3 Georgia,serif; text-align: center; float: right; padding: 0.5em 0.5em 0.5em 0.5em; border: 3px double #ccc; border-width: 3px 0;">The text of the sidebar.</span>
Oct. 12th, 2007 05:16 am (UTC)
The version I gave puts the sidebar as lavendar text on a dark blue background. Leave out 'color' and 'background' to achieve the same effect I achieved, although I did so by accident because I left out a semi-colon. ;)

But you knew that already, I'm sure. You're probably better at HTML than I am.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 12th, 2007 02:18 pm (UTC)
I love the little text insert thingie - I may have to play with it too.

And yes, Fall really is the most perfect time of year.
( 5 hisses — Hiss at me! )

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