The hot days of summer are slowing, I open the door and Autumn dances in In all of her brazen glory and childish splendor, She breezes by with a cool morning kiss and a rustling of leaves.
“It’s about time!” Summer grumbled as Autumn swished past him with a cool kiss on his cheek and a swish of colorful leafy skirts.
“Summer you are such a grumbly old man!” Autumn laughed. “What a way to greet someone who is going to give you a much needed rest.”
And a much-needed rest Summer needed indeed. After the sabbatical he took last season (which actually is what he took every season through Autumn, Winter and Spring) Summer felt refreshed and ready to start this season. But true to Nature, all good things must come to an end. And Summer’s good thing had ended the minute he walked in Spring’s door.
That is when Summer’s horrible season began. Oh, he thought it was going to be just fine when he took over for Spring earlier. Spring had a wonderful season to start. The rains had been bountiful and had given all the trees and growing things a good start. But then for some reason Spring went a little too far and the flooding began. Now if anyone knows the human race, you can guess how angry they were when Spring misshappenly added more rain to the already swollen creeks and rivers and caused a myriad of wet mishaps that the humans were still trying to correct, even now. When he took over for Spring on June 21, Spring assured him that all was good and well. Everything was well taken care of or so he thought. The farmers were angry that they could not get into their soggy fields and got a late start on planting. No one was even ready for the hot days to come. And the bugs…oh the bugs that followed the wet season were atrocious. Summer knew he should have read the Book of Nature a little closer at first, but as always Summer was a little bit lazy and barely glanced at the book and Spring’s notations. He could well imagine the abundance of “OOPS” Spring had written in the side columns of the Book of Nature.
So Summer’s season started out in a bit of hot water…so to speak. And like a snowball rolling downhill, (to use old man Winter’s quote) troubles just seemed to expand. Summer tried to make things right by adding a little extra sunshine. But that just brought the huge severe thunderstorms, the hail, and the most dreaded of all….tornadoes. Tornadoes were the bane of Summer’s existence. They had been around since before grandfather’s season. No one really knew where they came from and even now, nobody could actually predict when or where they would pop up. But the humans were getting closer to figuring it out. Summer just wished they would do it soon. Because tornadoes were not good for Summer’s reputation.
“Summer…” Autumn was waving a golden sunflower in front of Summer’s face. “Yoo-hoo Summer, are you listening to me?” She breezed.
Summer came out of his melancholy musings and focused on what Autumn was saying to him. “Summer, you do daydream aplenty!” Autumn tittered. “Do you have anything to sip? The trip here was very hot and dry, and I am just parched!” Autumn gushed.
“Well, I have some leftover lemonade.” Summer offered.”
“Actually, I was hoping for a nice cup of spiced apple tea.” Autumn hummed.
Summer sighed. “Autumn, you know I don’t keep spiced apple tea in my cupboards. You ask me this every season. And I tell you every season, I don’t have any. You should try to bring some with you next time.”
Autumn chortled. “Oh Summer, there’s always hope for you. I know that one day you will be prepared for my arrival. I do have some packed in my suitcase.”
She danced off, leaving a chill in the air. Summer shivered. Ooh …Fall was in the air. Or rather Autumn was. Autumn was very meticulous about what her given name was. She did not think Fall was eloquent enough for her. It reminded her too much of stairs and skinned knees. She much rather liked Autumn because it sounded colorful and cool. And there was no arguing with Autumn for Summer learned long ago, that Autumn looked sweet and calm on the out side, but make her angry by calling her Fall and she could give you one of the frostiest looks that would freeze even old man Winter on his coldest days.
Summer sighed. He had better get his suitcase packed. He still needed to put his finishing notes in the Book of Nature. Today was September 23, the first day of Autumn’s season. Autumn would be moving in with all of her cool weather belongings. Autumn was prepared for anything…you could tell by the many numerous suitcases and boxes that she had packed for her season.
Summer once asked Autumn if she really needed all that stuff.
With a frosty look Autumn replied, “Summer… one must be prepared for anything. Oh my goodness, don’t you remember the year that you mistakenly left some of your summer heat behind and it got up to ninety degrees here. I had to actually dig out some of my green leafy outfits to stay cool.” She continued, “And remember the year old man Winter forgot what day it was and mistakenly showed up with snow in October. That was one of the coldest seasons I have ever endured! I am lucky that I brought my wool coat and snowshoes that year. Well, that is why I have to be prepared. Humph!” Autumn had sighed and flounced away in her leafy skirts. Summer made a mental note to himself, that he would not ask Autumn that question again.
Summer had just finished packing his suitcase. The Book of Nature was completed for this season. He remembered to write about the flooding waters, the many insects including the grasshoppers, though not invited to this season, had come back three fold this year. Summer had been cursed with these buggers for four years now. And he saw no end in sight to get rid of these unwanted pests. Heck, the pesky little buggers would probably don mittens and scarves and try to eat their way through Autumn and old man Winter’s seasons. He had noted the hot days and severe storm days. However he was able to note that even through all this, the flowers had bloomed beautifully and the crops had turned out wonderfully. Of course, there was that incident with the oil spill and a few ruined crops. But that wasn’t his fault. He blamed that on Spring and human error. Spring would have to take the brunt of that blame. Besides, from the sounds of it the farmers had been well compensated for that mess.
So with a warm goodbye Summer bid Autumn a final farewell for the season. Already the place was taking on Autumn’s personality. The leaves were beginning to turn colors of gold, red and orange. The first frost had settled in some places which had caused the garden plants and flowers to wilt. The pumpkins were turning orange on the vine and the Mr. Moon was a round orange circle in the night sky. Summer could not understand, however, how Autumn could handle this time of year with all the trees shedding their beautiful green leaves and the beautiful flowers wilting and turning brown. But Autumn just sighed and said, “The earth is just settling down for the long winter sleep, Summer. And I am here to sing it a lovely lullaby. Summer you should know what a good rest does for the soul.” That Summer did indeed know.
Summer was long gone when Autumn finally finished unpacking. It was time to sit down, put up her feet and take a sip of that cup of spiced apple tea. And time to get acquainted with the Book of Nature for another season. As she opened the book, Autumn squealed in surprise.
“Summerrrrrrrrrrr….” She yelled.
But it was too late. Summer had disappeared around the bend skipping and whistling, and Summer being Summer did not even realize he had left a week of very hot days behind.