Saturday, November 2, 2013
Why I Really Don't Like Fall
But it just isn't working for me.
It started out with laryngitis, then a cough that woke me up at night. It didn't last long, but it was a firm reminder of the joys the season brings.
Then I wasted yet another morning waiting for it to get daylight enough to go out, only to find that when it was daylight it was windy/raining/so late that it was time for the girls.
So I'll be honest. I don't like fall. Since it doesn't garner the amount of loathing that winter rates, however, I'll keep it at dislike. Winter gets my full out wrath.
As a warm weather, great outdoors lover, here are my personal reasons to hate fall.
1. Shorter and shorter days. While Daylight Savings Time lingers, my mornings are a waste. I like to get out early, but it has to be daylight. I mean, seriously, there are coyotes on my road. And roaming herds of deer. I'd just as soon not encounter the first or have to argue with a group of dogs on leashes over either. Daylight helps me see the wildlife before the dogs do and makes the walks safer for us all. Once the time changes, the evenings are lost. But face it, cool temperature means there's not a lot to be done in the evening anyway.
2. Heat. I hate to run the heat just as bad as I do the AC, and it is much harder on my nasal passages and skin. So I also have to remember to fill up, clean, and refill a humidifier. And pay the propane bill. And aim for that perfect temperature that allows me to be warm enough sitting around, and still cool enough to sleep.
3. Dermatitis. OK, that may be a real personal issue but it's not one that is limited to me, I'm sure. If it were, there wouldn't be so many products for dealing with it. I hate colder weather because I itch. Sometimes there is not enough lotion in the world to make me feel better and I have yet to find the perfect solution. Switching to liquid black soap for showering has helped a lot, but I still need a lot of lotion to survive.
4. Cold and flu season. Yes, I have summer allergies and wage a seasonal battle with them. But at least I enjoy the grass, trees, flowers, etc. I do not enjoy my contact with the sources for cold and flu season. Sneezing, coughing, runny noses. And surrounded by little people, even though we all get a flu shot, you can bet that if a nasty bug comes along we're going to get it. I jokingly call E1 typhoid Mary because the first year she was big enough to interact with other kids I was constantly sick. And while she would bounce back quickly from a stomach bug, I'd feel like dying for days. Plus dealing with sick cranky kids is absolutely no fun.
5. Cold weather. Yes, that is related to heat but a whole separate source of dislike. It's cold and getting colder. Walking the dogs means layers and chills. But cold also means the children cannot go outside to the swing set or trampoline to play. It means saying goodbye to the pool, which all three love. They have a lot of energy that has to go somewhere. With no outdoor recreation, they drive me up the walls and generally wreck the house.
6. Less income. My dog boarding business is seasonal and although I may be ready for a little slowdown by the end of summer, it's still hard to adjust to the lack of income. Sure, Thanksgiving will be a busy few days, and there are almost always people taking off for a few days here and there, but I do miss a steady income.
7. The end of the growing season. I was tolerating the season a bit better until that killer freeze turned my sunny lantanas, tropical calla lilies, and pretty much all my flowers into dark brown, wilted memories. Even if it does mean weeding and mowing, I'd rather have growing plants than the brown dead season that fall gradually becomes. Fall is an ending, a goodbye to all things annual, from the butterflies to the flowers they love and the crops we planted. It's a signal to hunker down and get ready. To pack on the pounds and hibernate.
8. Naked trees. The sad, bare limbs of the trees are symbolic of the season. Already the poplars and many of my maples have given up their leaves. They're piled in soggy, wet, lumps around the yard and driveway. No matter how bright the colors may turn before they fall, they are so much prettier when they are green and on the trees. And the naked trees are even empty of birds, particularly the singing birds who brightened the mornings of summer. Naked trees also mean leaves in the kennel yard. Anywhere else, they're not so bad, but in the kennel they must be cleaned up or become places for doggies to do their business, making walking hazardous and soon smelly.
9. Indian Summer. I don't why it is called Indian Summer, but that return to warm weather such as we've had this week after everything has been killed by a hard freeze and the trees are loosing, or have already lost, their leaves is just cruel. It's like twisting the knife in the fatal wound already inflicted by fall. We know the summer is dying, but Indian Summer taunts us with the memory of what it was.
10. There is no way to avoid knowing that winter is coming. Perhaps it's the hundreds of years of hardscrabble mountain living that my ancestors did after moving here and perhaps it goes back further than that. But there is a knowledge deep in my bones that fall means the hard season is ahead. I know, winter isn't what it was 100 years ago, but I swear it is genetically programmed into me. Fall is just the warning shot and there's no way to avoid the bullet that winter will be, just a question of how bad it will hurt.
So, no, I don't like fall. Despite its moments of clarity and grandeur; despite the beautiful sugar maple outside my window and the clear blue sky, and despite the times when I can really appreciate a moment of the season, I just don't like fall.
No matter how I try to convince myself otherwise, fall brings the long spiral into winter, the yearly struggle against a touch of seasonal depression, the feeling of sadness that bidding farewell to the summer brings.