Fall is officially here. School children that used to float out of their cars in the morning, arms spread out like wings flying in the warm, dewy morning air, now step out and stop for a moment. Their bodies are stuck in an invisibly viscous chilled air. As if plunged head-deep into the ocean it looks like they are walking through water. Their faces look puzzled, lit up by the bright morning sun that through the window showed promise of summer heat. Their hands reach for the coats their parents lost the battle for being put on just moments before.
Teens and adults, stand at the bus stop curling into themselves trying to hold onto their own body heat as it slips between the fibers of their sweaters. They linger just a bit longer at the milk bar slowly adding cream to their hot coffee lost in a daydream of the day ahead or past. Bodies with hands warmed by disposable coffee cups are extending their time inside just a few minutes longer before the chilly air slaps their cheeks.
The sun tosses diamonds through the teasing trees that are filled with the deep warm colours of a sweltering fire: golden amber, flame red and burnt orange. Meanwhile, the transparent air blankets your skin with ice and blows puffs of air in your tearing eyes.
Cars and buses exhale smoke like the elegant, dramatic, slow moving, black and white characters of an old movie seemingly unfazed by the dramatic grande entrance of autumn.
Global warming or not, fall has arrived in New England. The sweaters, long underwear, hats and gloves come out more for necessity than accessory. The flannel and the plaid take their place front and center in the wardrobe. The closet swells with the additional girth of winter coats taken out of storage.
Night comes before we are ready. Darkness literally falls from the sky as we step into our homes for the evening hesitant to step out again in the cold dark of the day that night or the next morning. With one exception…Halloween.