Once upon a time, fall was my favorite season, and October was my favorite month.
Even though I dreaded September because I never liked public school very much, I somehow managed to weigh the beauty of October – its changing leaves and crisp air; ditches filled with goldenrods, purple ageratum, and wild mulberry; pecan trees full of cawing crows – against the nausea rising in my throat over the thought of yellow Bluebird school bus #28 stopping in front of our house to pick me up for city school. It may as well have been Hades coming to take me to the Underworld for all the dread it inspired. I still shudder when I remember how its brakes screeched.
Over time, I came to prefer summer. I no longer lived where ditches were bright with fall wildflowers and the cool afternoon air was filled with the pungent smell of burning leaves; autumn didn’t hold the same charm in town that it had in Russell County. Furthermore, I sure didn’t look forward to the sudden influx of thousands of students and football fans every fall, creating traffic jams and other nuisances that come with overflows of people.
All these years later, though, I find myself looking forward to fall again. I no longer have to maneuver Auburn traffic to get to an office on time, and I won’t be bringing home what felt like three billion compositions and research papers to read and grade every other week.
An added extra is that my favorite holiday is Halloween, and I am already decorating and making my scary movie list for this month. I am ready to, in the words of Robert Frost, be “beguiled” as October “release[s] on leaf at break of day” and “at noon release[s] another,” while “enchanting the land with amethyst.”
Marian Carcache welcomes
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