I t used to be you could tell autumn was nearing when the leaves in the trees began to change from green to orange, red and yellow. When they fell, winter was right around the corner.
But the signs of the coming of cold weather aren’t that easy to spot. There are many other signs to look for which herald the passing of the seasons.
• Summer clothes — It’s that time of year where summer clothing starts disappearing off store shelves and is replaced by winter duds. I have come to dread seeing flip flops, swimsuits and shorts replaced by boots, long underwear and coats. Seeing those back-to-school shopping ads gearing up in July is a sure sign summer is quickly coming to an end.
• TV advertising — Speaking of ads on TV, you know summer is over when it’s not even Halloween and there are Christmas ads hitting the airwaves. For crying out loud, at least let us make it through October before bombarding us with Christmas ads.
• Short days — We went for a walk last week at 7:30 p.m. and it was dark by the time we got back. I remember going for walks on summer evenings and being out until 9 p.m. Not any more. Pretty soon it will be dark by 5 p.m. Now I know why bears hibernate.
• Warming up the car — I walked out this morning to go to work and found my car windows frosted over. Frost, people, in September! I had to take an extra five minutes and let the car warm up since I don’t know where my ice scraper is.
• Turn up the heat! — I was sitting in the office the same morning
I had to thaw out my car and all of the women here were complaining it was cold.
The thermostat says 66 degrees!” someone declared. I was fine, I had already seen the writing on the wall with the frozen car windows, so I dressed warm. With a long sigh I walked over to the thermostat and turned on the furnace.
There — problem solved. • Making a list — It was brought up in my family that we will soon need to draw names for Christmas gifts. Already?
I would like to enjoy a few more days of an Indian Summer, maybe get a chance to take in a Halloween hayride or haunted trail and then have Thanksgiving dinner BEFORE I have to deal with shopping for Christmas gifts.
I’m telling you, all these signs of the coming of winter are quickly putting a damper on my late summer celebration. I will desperately cling to the last glimmer of summer, the final ray of warm sunshine and the last laughter of family cookouts, trips to the beach and lazy camping trips.
Summer is nearly gone — curse you winter, you win again.