A Hint of Fall

Could Summer Really Be Over?

Our seasons in Los Angeles are very different than in other parts of the country. For the last few days, we’ve had a touch of autumn; but that doesn’t mean that there will be any consistency in the weather over the next six weeks or so. We might very well be in for a spell of hot, dry, windy weather—otherwise known as the Santa Ana winds. Or we could actually get some measurable (i.e., more than 1 centimeter) precipitation, though that is unlikely. It will probably get cooler in the evenings, or not.

One thing for sure: My left knee is aching, and I struggle slightly to rise from a sitting position. I’ve just taken some aspirin, which will probably help some. And I will probably get my flu shot sometime this week, because the flu season sets in fast whenever the weather gets cooler.

Although this has not been a particularly hot summer, it has been a humid one. Our humidity usually lasts only through July, but this year it has been virtually non-stop. We even got some slight drizzle yesterday and Friday. It would be nice if we had another wet winter, though the scientists who predict this sort of thing say that California will continue to have terrible droughts. This translates into terrible wildfires. Sigh!

 

 

“Nothing Gold Can Stay”

Fall Colors in Wisconsin

Here’s a short poem by Robert Frost about the brilliant gold leaves of a New England autumn. I miss them greatly: I went to college in New Hampshire, and in California there isn’t much brilliant foliage in the fall. The poem is entitled “Nothing Gold Can Stay.”

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

An Autumn Wonderland

The Farina Family Diner in Queechee, Vermont

As my vacation gets closer, I start daydreaming of being able to visit a beautiful country while being away from the constant pressures of work.It has been a hot several weeks in Los Angeles, capped off by the time we spent in a subtropical Hollywood during Labor Day Weekend. It would be a pleasure to not have to worry about the placement of fans in our uninsulated apartment at night. And then, by the time we return, it will start getting darker sooner—which means cooler nights and less heat build-up in the walls and attic.

I remember my four years as a student at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire. It was around this time of year I would take the train and bus from Cleveland to Hanover, only to arrive in an autumn wonderland of cool weather, tangy apple cider, leaves turning colors, and a kind of crispness in the air that does not exist in Southern California.

Shown above is a place Martine and I stopped for lunch during our New England trip in 2005. (I hope it’s still there. The food, as I recall, was good.)