Autumnal equinox

My favorite season begins in the United States with the autumnal equinox at 11:09 EDT tonight.

So many of the things that made fall so special in years gone by have disappeared from my life:

Football. I lost interest in football about the time Archie Manning left Ole Miss to join the New Orleans Saints. Too much hype and too much money involved. Takes the sport out of it.

The Mississippi State Fair. This great delight of my growing-up years marked the very day that it turned cold in Mississippi – a welcome respite from the heat and humidity of Southern summer days.

School days. This was back in the days when children actually started school in the fall. I remember sorting through my newly purchased school supplies – writing tablets, workbooks, poster paints, pencils and book satchel – and counting the days until school began again.

Halloween. My kid brother Isaac and I trick-or-treating over a three-mile radius of home, then divvying up the sackfuls of our favorites candies, cookies and fruits. My own efforts to make this the favorite holiday of my two boys. In the early years in my apartment here, thousands of children came through this complex, and no matter how well-stocked, we always ran out of candy before we ran out of kids. In recent years, trick-or-treaters no longer ring my doorbell – they’re all at the mall or some church-sponsored "fall festival" considered safer than going door-to-door.

The Anderson County Fair. One of the great pleasures of this neighborhood, beginning for me in 1985, was the county fair’s location – right outside my front door. I cannot put into words the excitement in the air during fair week – the sights, the sounds, the smells – and sitting on our front porch each night to enjoy the concerts and fireworks – for free! After three consecutive years of being rained out, the county dropped the fair. Anderson University (formerly Anderson College) has purchased the fairground property, and rumor has it there might be a football stadium in the works. So, the air might once more be filled with fall excitement.

Fall foliage. Oh, how I miss the colors of fall’s “cheerful and changeful page.” The deepest wines, the reds, the flaming oranges and the yellows are in my mind’s eye.

One thing is a constant: walking outside at sunrise to the sound of birdsong, the call of the wild goose and the feel of cool, brisk breezes on my skin. At this autumn moment, nothing could be finer than to be in Carolina in the morning!


Anonymous said...

I wish I could be there with you on the front porch drinking a cup of coffee and listening to those wonderful birdsongs!


B.J. said...

Phillip, my sweet great-nephw, remember the night we spent on the porch with a bottle of peach wine? We will do it again. BJ

tnlib said...

I've always enjoyed the smells and sounds of fall. The crunching of dead leaves under my feet. The burning of leaves and dead wood.

Ahab said...

Fall does have a unique beauty and crispness all its own.

Tiny said...

Tiny's favorite time of the year too! It was called Indian Summer when she was growing up surrounded with those awe inspiring colors. That time of year held a certain feeling of mystique in the air. It was a time to explore nature when the harvesting of crops was done.

Tiny also knew that butchering time was just round the corner. That was the time of year she hated. Couldn't stand the sound of the gun killing the hogs and calves nor the smell of raw meat and grease (lard) rendering. She thought that smell would never leave the air.

Happy Fall time everyone.

Debra said...

Fall is a beautiful season. I hope we get to see it soon. It is still in the upper 90's in Jackson, Ms and no hint of cooler days..... Looking forward to the Ms. State Fair Oct6-17 and my birthday Oct 7 and Chloe's birthday our Australian Shepherd was born on Halloween--we should have named her "Spooky"
Love, Debra

Sue said...

Aaaaaah the cool crispness of Fall, my favorite time of year too. Going to the apple farms, tasting their homemade cider, picking apples, hay rides, pumpkins and mums on the porch steps, leaves blanketing the lawn looks so pretty, too pretty to rake up! Love it all BJ!

Frodo, sipping a julep, said...

Frodo is experiencing the 19th consecutive day in September in which the temperature has exceeded 90 degrees, Fahrenheit. The geese are cooked, football is played inside, and the gallant Braves just dropped three in a row to the dirty women of Pennsylvania (the Filthydelphia Fillies). Come on Spring.