I walked outside this morning and enjoyed the refreshing sensations of the first day of autumn.
The sky was filled with high, dark clouds spreading an even, muted, shadowless light; a stiff breeze tousled my hair; and a few rain drops darkened the ground.
With a few pleasantly warm days behind us, this cold front reminded me of the reprieve from summer’s heat that usually arrives sometime in September. Its cool slap in the face has a way of waking you up from the stupor of sizzling August afternoons and making you feel ALIVE again.
It reminded me of a cool summer I spent in a wood-framed tent, running the climbing program at a scout camp near West Yellowstone.
Every morning we walked quickly through the brisk air alongside a clear stream to an outdoor shower, breakfast, and flag ceremony. Snow-white weasels with black-tipped tails sometimes trotted along the trail before us.
Afternoon thunderstorms blew over the caldera and gave us about fifteen minutes warning before the lightning bolts and drenching rain reached us.
One day I stayed atop the tower after clearing out the scouts and my staff. The winds gusted to 50 mph, rain alternately pelted and pounded the wooden tower like the salty spray of an ocean storm on the deck of an ancient ship, and a slender lightning bolt struck the tower’s lightning rod four feet away, sending a shock through both of my hands.
Every night, the coyotes yipped and squealed near the marsh. One night a wolf howled a hundred yards from the climbing tower where I stood with my girlfriend, it’s deep, drawn-out solo silencing the coyote choir instantly.
As you can see, autumn is my favorite season of the year … WHEN IT’S SEPTEMBER!!! For now, please bring back spring as quickly as possible.