The air is full of new smells. Here, it's creosote after a rainstorm. In my childhood, it was leaves burning. In Marin, it was rosemary and, on certain hikes, on certain days, salty sea air.
It's needing a sweater when you first go outside in the morning. Even if it's 80-something-degrees outside, it feels like winter's on its way. My tank tops feel under-dressed in temperatures that would, in other surroundings, be perfect. My wardrobe is turning to blacks and browns and greys; the pinks and yellows and aquamarines speak more of Mothers Day than Halloween.
And then there's Halloween. I'm not decorating outside this year, partly because we forgot to make the scarecrows and partly because TBG and I will be spending the holiday with FlapJilly.
On the inside, I've taken a fairly restrained (for me) approach. I tossed the broken but loved old decorations; not an easy thing to do, by any means. But sentiment gave way to My heirs will do it if I don't do it now and I smiled as I thought of the paper cups we are still using in the bathrooms.... the paper cups I took from G'ma... the G'ma who died two years ago..... and there are bags of them unopened in the closet... and I was ruthless.
What's left is, as Perfect Patty the Cleaning Maven remarked last week, is the loveliness this time of year brings. Everybody's house is so different, so decorated, so pretty. We have moved on from spending time admiring FlapJilly's recent photographic excursions with her mother to admiring and smiling at the decor. That pumpkin under the glass top table? He laughs out loud when you make a loud noise. Sneezing is an interesting experience in our house at this time of year.
There is Fall Decor waiting in the wings, to be followed by Chanukah then Christmas then New Years. There's a small pause for the sorbet of whatever is left in the candle container before Valentines Day descends. I love each and every moment of it, and I feel bereft when March arrives and there are no memories to be retrieved.
But I love the beginning, in October, most of all.