monday grumps: seasonal lover
09/08/2010 § 2 Comments
As a lover of sun and heat, I find myself weary of this ease into cooler temperatures. With warm days and cool nights, the weather is comfortable and unchallenged. The random lamentation of a fleeting summer is still brought up — particularly when sipping wine outside in parks or on balconies wearing long-sleeved shirts and sweaters, — but I think I speak for most when I say the change is welcomed. Some are looking forward to the fall, whereas others see this shift as a marker of an approaching winter. Leaving my third consecutive summer behind, tired of sweaty summer nights, I embrace the coolness. This is a new phenomena for me.
As a kid, I was always cold. During the winter months in the Ottawa Valley, I would wrap myself up in a blanket, insulated by my layers of clothing underneath and sit next to the roaring fire coming from our outdated, out-of-code, yet epically nostalgic, wood stove, curling my toes into the soles of my woolly-socked feet. I would protest the chores that had to be done, like feeding and watering the horses, preferring to stay close to the warmth of the hearth. Inside, I could curl into a cocoon and longingly dream of summer haze.
Yesterday, sitting on our balcony and sipping wine in sweaters, Tony mentioned his confusion of Cananda,
– I just don’t understand why, if given the option, people would choose to live in a country where it gets so cold. I am not looking forward to winter. It’s so cold.
– Perhaps their birth certificates dictate where they think they are supposed to live.
– Yeah, but b, you know better than that. We can choose.
He had a point. It made me wonder what compels people to stay in a country that boasts treacherous winters. Even though more than ninety-percent of the Canadian population lives as south as we can get — within 100 kilometres of the US border, — for the most part, we choose to stay. What do we get out of it?
I remember I had a conversation with Jameson many months ago about North American tendencies. We talked about the reasons that our culture is in the perpetual pursuit of progress that has been, until recently, unprecedented. For the past 100 years, it has been North America that has pushed the boundaries (technologically, culturally, territorially) not always in a good way.
Jameson & I,
– We are always in such a hurry to create things quickly. As a result, our products tend to lack a certain level of quality. Our ends are fleeting.
– Perhaps it is because we work with seasons. We use the warm seasons to plant ideas or money trees in order to generate as much as we can. Come fall, we harvest as much as we can so that we can hibernate throughout the winter. We inherently need to hoard our materials because we intuitively do not know when they will come again. So it is, we take advantage of everything and, perhaps, everyone. We have not quite adjusted to the idea of accessibility.
The comment made us both ponder the North American existence. He poured each of us a glass of Scotch and we shot them back. I think it was that day that Jameson, Maggy and I decided to head south before the winter sprang.
Three months has come and gone without a whisper. In three months, it will have been a year since the leaves started changing and new horizons were in my view. Instead of getting nostalgic and filled with pangs of longing, I feel excitement for the approaching season of sleepiness. Like the temperature, I have felt a shift. Perhaps I am romanticizing the Hell out of cold, dark days with cups of coffee and the tips of fingers poking out of blankets turning pages of paperbacks, but the idea of it makes me calm.
This fall and winter, I do not have school or an extenuating trip planned. I have small ideas of things I would like to do, but nothing that needs a regimented outline. There is no syllabus to organize my months nor a travel booklet to research. There is only the promise of the leaves changing and temperatures dropping and jackets and scarves and beds with two blankets and perhaps and maybes and turkey dinners and good people. Right now, for now, I look forward to that.