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Monday, September 21, 2009

Things to Remember in September

The one thing I miss most about living in Flagstaff is the change of seasons. You didn’t need a calendar. You just needed to step outside, look around, and feel what time of year it was.

I’ve always been partial to autumn. The aspens change colors, the air gets nippy in the evening, and wood smoke from previously dormant fireplaces foretells of holidays fast approaching. It doesn’t hurt that my birthday is in October, making autumn my own.

The changes of seasons in Phoenix are, shall we say, more subtle. Summer eventually loosens its death grip on us and the only way we recognize autumn is that it seems vaguely pleasant in the morning. Then we brag about the weather to out-of-town friends and relatives for seven months until summer begins again. That's our change of seasons in the Valley.

It was a shock to the system when I moved to Phoenix 10 years ago and realized there would be no colorful leaves on the ground, or bright green buds of grass in April. I’m not sure why this was a surprise, because I was quite familiar with the climate in the Valley having grown up 142 miles north of it. It made me miss and appreciate the obvious signs of the different seasons.

We find ourselves on the verge of autumn, which this year starts Sept. 22. The colors of the leaves in my old hometown and elsewhere will bear watching, and if my desktop weather gadget is at all accurate – and it has been so far – nighttime above the rim is already in the upper 40s. And that’s at 9 or 10 p.m.

Before long, we here in Preparednessville will begin posting messages about driving in winter conditions, staying safe in cold weather, and ensuring your house is not a holiday death trap. It all seems simultaneously far away and just around the corner.

What better way to help summer relax the vise it has us in and prepare for a new season by remembering one thing today, Sept. 21: Take five minutes to check the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

1 comment:

Taylor K said...

I miss Flagstaff, oh so much. Especially this time of year. I would trade in the awful summers for shoveling snow ANY day of the week.