Even though my birthday is in October, it isn’t my favorite month, mostly due to the whole association with horror due to Halloween. What I do like about October is that it’s the gateway to my favorite season of the year, Autumn. While in northern climates the season kicks off in September, in Florida it takes until October (and sometimes late October at that) for the temperature and humidity to start getting comfortable. While I can’t really call the weather we’re having cool by any stretch of the imagination, there’s enough going on—cooler mornings, not-as-stifling humidity, the hint of crispness in the air—to get excited that Fall is here.
Even though I lived up in the Midwest for three years, I only got to experience two Fall seasons, having moved right at the start of Winter. Getting to experience seasons, but especially Fall, was one of the biggest reasons for me to move from Florida to Ohio, and when the time came almost a year after I’d been living there, it did not disappoint. Getting to experience the turning of the leaves, the gradual chill that makes it the perfect time for soups, hot chocolate, and chili, the golden light all around, it was magical, and I remember how once or twice I cried from how happy I was being a part of it all.
My second Midwest Autumn was even better. By then I was living in Wisconsin, and I got to do some of the traditional Fall activities. I got to visit my first pumpkin patch and apple orchard, got to go on my first hay ride, and sit around an evening bonfire. It’s ridiculous how happy these activities make me. Put a bunch of pumpkins together near some hay, and I can’t help but grin widely. Add some apple cider to that mix and I’m in heaven.
You’ll understand then why being in Florida for Fall is quite hard. My wife loves Fall ten times as much as I do—where I only had the archetypical Fall experience for a couple years, she grew up with it—and she longs to wear scarves, leggings, sweaters, hats, and gloves. Were we to wear any of those in Florida at the moment, we’d be roasting in no time. Still, this is where we are for now, this is our home at the moment, so we make the best of it. We’ve decorated the house with some pumpkins, daily light up our Pumpkin Spice and Autumn Hayride candles, and took a family trip to a local blueberry farm that also does a Fall Festival. We embrace our current reality, and enjoy it for what it is. That said, I can’t wait for our trip up north for Thanksgiving, when we’ll have a few days of the real Autumn deal!
Whether up north or in Florida, Fall remains my favorite season, and while I still don’t like that my birth month has been coopted by all the horror stuff, it will always make me excited, both for my birthday, and for being the herald to the most wonderful season of the year.