Sometimes the shifting of the seasons comes so subtly you can barely tell. Just a hint of gradual change until one day you realize, “This seems a bit hot for spring.” You search back in memory for that point when blooms and blossoms gave way to steam and sweat and yet you can’t find it; you just know that it did. That’s how the change comes sometimes.
This was not one of those times. It was ninety degrees last Tuesday afternoon. A cool front came through on Wednesday followed by a cold front Friday evening and I found a couple of small patches of frost on Saturday morning. So much for the subtle shift from summer to fall.
It’s not really a complaint. Even though it’s nice to have those hints that come along and give you a bit of notice, there’s also something pleasant about the distinct change, too. There’s a clear difference in the feel of the air, even though it warmed up quite a bit yesterday. As soon as the sun settled below the treetops and a few clouds started to gather, the temperature dropped back down pretty quickly.
Apples are ripening and the cold snap last week finally put a damper on the warm season grasses that have needed mowing every five days for the last three or four months. The mornings are drenched with heavy dews. We’re at that point now where you turn on the heater for the drive to work and the AC for the drive home. The last tomatoes are on the vine and great swaths are cutting across the fields of corn. The soybeans are starting to yellow on the ridges and the creeks are running lower below the bridges.
The season of green and growing slows into the season of harvest and storing. It’s time to repair the old cider mill and start washing plastic jugs. Every season brings about its own duties and pleasures and they are often linked together.