For me, anyway. I started sensing the bend in the sunlight a few weeks ago. And what feels to me like the last, desperate blast of heat from summer, bringing out the big guns in a final attempt to assert itself. I know what you're thinking, those of you who have known New England autumns, what most think of as "real" fall. Actual seasons. The thing is, we have seasons in SoCal. But they are much more subtle. Which makes that turn from summer even more precious, to me, who lives happiest and best between September and December. I suppose if I ever live in, say, Boston, the overtness of trees in full flame and preponderance of crisp, cool days would make my head (and heart) explode. It might be almost too much.
You know SAD? People with SAD need summery sun--or at least sunlamps--to alleviate the depression that sets in when winter gets too long and dark. I think I have my own version. I look forward to fall all year. To shorter days, cooler weather, blue, breezy skies. To the un-greening of leaves, seeing pumpkins, needing a sweater. To the deep nostalgia that washes over me as back-to-school approaches. I admit it, I'm one of those annoying people who actually looked forward to the new school year as a kid. I was ready to see my friends/classmates again, to wear spanking new clothes, and to be an ant again after three months as a grasshopper. Autumn has always brought a feeling of possibility into my soul. I always get excited when fall comes, I always remember years past and vibrate a little with the sense that something new is just around the corner.
My New Year begins the day after Labor Day. Y'all can have January 1st and May Day. Early September is my time for "spring cleaning" of the mind, for revitalizing, re-energizing, resolving to do better, for dusting out my spiritual cobwebs.