Summer Winding Down

Things that we just can’t ignore: Kids will be back in school before this month is over. The leaves are beginning to turn, and not just in the swamps. The shadows and light have a fall cast.

There’s no escaping that while the temperature is still plenty warm and the air conditioners are still getting a workout, the change of seasons is in the air. Town summer recreation programs are over for another year, and even town beaches are posting end-of-season closure dates. And sales of mums are picking up.

Wasn’t it just a few short weeks ago that school let out for the summer? Well, a fine summer it has been. It’s still too hot to think about winter clothing, but the time for scarves and hats and boots will be here before we know it.

Yet even as one season fades, the opening of the school year brings with it a sense of everything new once again. Store displays of empty notebooks, sharpened pencils, new pens, and for the younger set, untouched crayons carry with them an excitement about things to come. And for those of us long past worrying about the first day of school, we still have our memories.

For parents, getting ready for the start of school brings feelings of nostalgia and the reality of the years that are passing. But there’s nothing like the opening of school to remind us of all we have yet to learn, and of the excitement that knowledge of new things can bring. It’s as reminder we should follow whatever the season.

So while we’ll still enjoy plenty of days of wearing flip-flops and shorts, their time is running out for the year. In the heat of August, we’re spending days and evenings at the beach and by the lake, making use of the backyard pool, and squeezing in a last summer camping trip. But we’re also filling canning jars and freezer bags and keeping ahead of the weeds in the garden as its bounty increases daily and we prepare for winter meals.

All in all, it’s a wonderful time of year, a time when nature’s bounty and beauty are on display for everyone to enjoy. These August days call to us to make the most of the hours of sunshine and warmth. Because as New Englanders, we know what lies ahead.

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