Falling for fall

Sandy Stand Lake in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Photo by David Peters.
Sandy Stand Lake in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Photo by David Peters.

If you’ve never experienced a fall like I have, let me paint a picture for you. It is a season you can smell, taste and see. The leaves change from their usual shades of green to a menagerie of colors ranging from light yellow to deep purple.

The air changes and becomes crisp and clean. The smell of burning wood fills neighborhoods as chimneys puff out trails of smoke. The days aren’t too cold or too hot. Instead, they are sandwiched between a chilly morning and a chilly evening.

In the past, fall was everything. The reaping of the harvest used to be the most important duty to be done during the year. After months of work, farmers could bring in their crops and reap the benefits.

Every person and every animal ate. There was much celebration. These celebrations, called Harvest festivals, turned into traditions that we still carry on to this day throughout our blue collar country towns.

Even the changing of the menu is refreshing. Although they aren’t as seasonal as they used to be, we can still appreciate the addition of pumpkin spice in our pies, coffees and ice creams. There is nothing that indicates fall is upon us more than the opening of a locally owned cider mill that makes fresh apple cider and cinnamon doughnuts.

Fall is, also, the academic new year. A time to go back to school and gather with friends, peers and teachers. The beginning of a new school year always feels like a fresh start and a clean slate with brand new note books waiting to be filled.

After a summer of working or, if you’re lucky, traveling, the fall is time for students to get back to the daily grind and continue making progress. Most of us spend almost two decades continually being educated. With each autumn season, we are one year closer to our last graduation day.

This isn’t a bunch of facts or information. It’s safe to say that if you can read this, you, more than likely, have experienced what I’m talking about many times. If anything, I want to give you something to look forward to. Fall will soon be upon us and I hope you remember to enjoy it.

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