Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Facing Facts

Subconsciously, I knew it was coming. I really did. Otherwise I wouldn't have made Oz put on our heated mattress pad before he left for Arkansas on Monday morning and I wouldn't have agreed to put fleece sheets on M1's bed. (M2 is her own furnace, so she sleeps without sheets and in her underwear most nights, regardless of the ambient temperature. I'm reasonably sure she'd be quite happy living in the Arctic Circle wearing a pair of shorts and a tank top and flip-flops.)

I knew it was coming when Oz and M1 bought me fuzzy Halloween socks, which are like a massager for my feet, and when the massive flocks of starlings started taking over my yard and sounding like so many teenage girls at a Justin Bieber concert.

But when I looked at the thermostat this morning and saw that it said "70," I knew I couldn't deny it any longer.

Fall is here.

Part of me has been excited about this for a while. The end of the phrase 'heat index,' which is a loosely-worded way of saying 'death by humidity,' is a great thing. And fall does mean that I can bust out the hot cocoa and marshmallows. It means the kids aren't going to melt in their Halloween costumes when they're dashing across my friend's neighborhood.

It means the candy won't melt, either.

The leaves have been falling for a while, too. It might *look* like there are still a bunch of leaves on this tree, but you'd be deceived. Those views of the sky weren't there a month ago. I'd say about 50-60% of the leaves on that tree are down. The crape myrtles are losing all their leaves quickly, too. The hackberry trees (the origin of the infamous berries that my children stuffed in their ears) are always the last to lose their leaves, but even they're starting to get that golden hue.

Anyway, I couldn't deny any longer that fall is upon us. Even the sun mocked me on Monday when M1 and I were outside studying shadows and directions and talking about how your shadow will always point north at noon - assuming you're in the northern hemisphere, of course - and I looked up at the sun and had to move my arm down about 10 degrees from vertical to point directly at it.


I had left my hummingbird feeder up till today. I just couldn't bear to take it down, because to me, hummingbirds are summer. Watching them play domination games and listening to their little squeaky chirps and testing to see how close to the feeder I can be while watering the garden and have them still eat... those mean warm weather. Sprinklers and swimsuits. Fresh tomatoes. Lemonade. And those are some of my favorite things.

So I took the hummingbird feeder down and emptied it out onto the grass. The liquid had been sitting there for probably a month, but I'd been in deeeeeep denial. Then I replaced it with this:

We get cardinals and sparrows all winter long. When it's snowy, they will come up onto the front porch for food, which is so cute because then you can go outside and see little birdy feet tracks all over the concrete.

And with snow comes cat tossing. And Christmas decorating. And sweaters that hide all the holiday calories.

Hm. Maybe this whole fall gig ain't so bad after all.


Habebi said...

Let's face the facts here- fall is fab when it arrives and you know it! ;)

Mom on the Verge said...

You send those hummingbirds down here, okay? We had to turn the A/C back on yesterday. I hate the south...