Autumn equinox

From the Japanese maple just outside my kitchen window at home in the mountains...

From the Japanese maple just outside my kitchen window at home in the mountains…

I can hardly express how pleased I am that, as of today, fall has officially begun in the Western Hemisphere. With a couple of exceptions (several days here and there of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and in July a full week of them) it’s been a rather mild summer for northern California, so I can’t really complain. Still, well, fall.

And it’s off to a lovely start. Yesterday dawned with gray skies and a soaking overnight rain; by mid-day, that gentle rain had whipped up into an actual storm,

Sweet-gum leaves in early fall, just after a storm.

Sweet-gum leaves in early fall, just after a storm.

complete with lightning and explosions of thunder. It blew in and blew out just as quickly, and this morning greeted us with sunshine. A month ago it would have been hot sunshine, but now, with autumn underway, the sunlight is coming from a different angle, a cooler one that casts more shadows. The temperature barely topped 80 today, and the forecast for the coming week will stay about the same. I’m delighted.

Autumn has been my favorite season since I was a small child. I’ve always loved

Fall and winter blend by late November in the Sierras...

Fall and winter blend by late November in the Sierras…

that crisp, cool feel to the mornings and the brisk breeze that livens up the afternoons in the fall. And that first frost! Mmmm. I love pumpkins and Halloween–that my birthday is in the middle of the season hasn’t hurt a bit–and taking a long walk, scuffling through the crunchy fallen leaves after Thanksgiving dinner is almost better than the dinner itself.

Here in California, the trees haven’t started putting on their fall colors, yet. That won’t happen until late October and November. By then it will be even cooler outdoors–maybe as low as the 60s during the day. I know that doesn’t sound like much to those of you who live in colder climes, but for me it will be nice to finally put away the summer clothes and bring out long pants, socks and maybe even sweaters!

Happy Autumn, everyone!

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2 responses to “Autumn equinox

  1. Happy Fall to you, as well, Wren! Here, in west central FL, we’ve had a wet, hot, summer. The past week the early morning hours have had a touch of that Autumn feeling, and I, like you, LOVE that time of year. My pledge to myself is to take advantage of that crisp-ish air and begin a walking routine again. Now, if the body will just agree with the head, I’ll be lacing up the sneaks and heading out the door soon! :-)

    • Now that’s the attitude! Hi, Pauline! I should do the same thing now that the heat is pretty much over for the season.