“Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.”

Mornings this time of year are chilly but not yet cold. I could easily see Gracie’s breath when she was sitting on the top back step surveying her yard. She looked more like a steam engine than a dog. When I went to get the paper, I saw my neighbor, and we chatted a bit. Both of us agreed winter is out least favorite season.

When I was a kid, on mornings like today, we used to pretend we were smoking cigarettes and blowing out the smoke. We’d hold the pretend cigarettes in pretend cigarette holders between our fingers, and in exaggerated gestures we’d take puffs and let out the smoke. Our conversation was lah-di-dah. I think a young Bette Davis would have recognized us.

This time of year my mother and I would argue about what I’d wear to school over my uniform. She wanted me warm in the chilly mornings for the walk to school so she insisted on a jacket, useless in the warmth of the afternoons. I knew I’d shove the jacket into my school bag or tie it around my waist for the walk home. I wanted to wear a sweater. We’d go back and forth and many mornings my mother just gave up. Her parting words were, “Don’t blame when you get cold.”

Cool summer mornings are my favorites but mornings this time of year are a close second. I love the way the sharp sunlight stabs through the leaves picking and choosing places to shine. The light is brightest at the end of the branches facing the house. The rest of the tree is in shadow. Maybe it’s a metaphor for this time of year.

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14 Comments on ““Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.””

  1. Hedley Says:

    And so Barry Manilow got a huge shout out in Game One of the World Series. It was the highlight really of Game One but lets set aside the delights of the great Gary Antelope and get ready for tonight’s fun.

    The Times headline today announced “Game of conkers? Not this year, as Britain suffers shortage”…It has been the worst year in living memory for conkers, according to a survey by the National Trust.

    Maggie is at the doggie beautician, I am hard selling the Magnetic Fields show at the Crofoot.

    A Bittersweet October – Yes indeed.

    • katry Says:

      Muy Dear Hedley,
      The HR was one and done so I was okay then they started, and I was discouraged, but I have high hopes for Game 2!!

      No conkers? What is the world coming to??

      Not yet bittersweet!

      • Hedley Says:

        Mrs MDH is furious, she picked up Maggie and they have done a terrible job with her face cutting her down way too close.

        Hope that you are right Katmah, hope you are right

  2. Birgit Says:

    My favorite October song, bittersweet kitsch :
    Kevin Mahogany – “When October Goes”
    http://normaltd.tumblr.com/post/32658084360/when-october-goes-by-kevin-mahogany-shared-from
    Expecting first frost this weekend…

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I went and downloaded this song-thanks for the introduction.

      Too soon for the frost but my heat is blasting right now so it is still a cool day.

  3. olof1 Says:

    Our summer mornings are always cool here, it’s very unusual thet they are warm more than a couple of days every summer. We had none this summer though.

    Now they aren’t even chilly, they are cold and today the first snow fell just before the sun was about to settle down for the day. It will melt away tomorrow butb the night will be cold so I’ll have to drive on slippery roads tomorrow I’m afraid.

    The best autumn mornings are when we’ve had frost during the night and fog starts to rise when the sun shows, it feels sort of magical those days πŸ™‚

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      We have cool early mornings in the summer but the sun heats us too quickly and the day gets hot.

      I much prefer chilly this time of year: too soon to be cold. My sister in Colorado has already had her first snow storm. She can have it!!

      Magical is the perfect word to describe those mornings.

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I don’t remember any arguments about what to wear to school. Probably I didn’t have too much of anything to choose from at that point. In junior high and high school, one wore what was in style and I probably didn’t wear such unstylish things as coats unless it was very cold indeed. I had a mohair sweater, a poncho, a PGR (pea green raincoat) or whatever was the style of the day.
    Confession: I still do the pretend smoking thing on cold mornings but not where anyone can see. πŸ˜€
    Enjoy the day. We got Sandy coming up maybe.

    • katry Says:

      Caryn,
      What to wear wasn’t ever an argument as we had uniforms, but a jacket or a coat was sometimes at issue. I had a spring/fall jacket, a couple of sweaters and a winter coat. They were at issue as my mother was convinced we’d get pneumonia.

      I loved my PGR and think I wore it out when I was in high school.

      That’s a great confession-I got a chuckle. Do you flourish?

      I watched the news at 11 last night to get the low down on Sandy-all I heard was it’s still a possibility.

  5. Bob Says:

    My mother always made sure that I was dressed warm enough on cool November mornings. Like you I had to carry it home as the day warmed up. Today the morning started out cloudy and 72 degrees. The high was 81 just before the cold front came through and dropped the temperature to the lower 60s with a cool north breeze.

    Just as they have done throughout the NL playoffs, the Giants put together a win against arguably the best pitcher in baseball. I will be watching to see how the Giants figure out how to head for Detroit with two wins under their belts πŸ™‚

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      Today was in the 60’s again as it has been for the whole week. The nights go down to the low 50’s which is fine for sleeping.

      Like you, I will be watching the series tonight, but I’ll be hoping Detroit goes home tied up at 1 game to 1. After all, I am an American League fan though the Red Sox aren’t on my list of favorites right now.

  6. katry Says:

    Bob,
    Only if they intend to ride them!!


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