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Grey Matter

Lesley is also a columnist for UFO Magazine. Check it out !

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Fall Thoughts

I can feel Winter on the way and I am not the least bit happy about it. Fall is lovely. It is my favorite season, but in the back on my mind is always the fact that winter is not so far away. I think this is likely why myself and others love Fall so much -- it is our last bit of light before darkness descends.

Winter brings with it not only the cold, but also so much more darkness. There are no more trips to the grocery store (or wherever) at 8 PM with the sun still somewhat shining and no more long conversations with others out on patios in the evening. Winter is a very solitary time of year. Yes, there is Christmas and New Year's, but those have lost their glamour for me since the loss of my sisters. Although I try to make up for their loss by going somewhere or doing something, I still find them exceptionally gloomy.

Here in New Mexico, there are many Fall celebrations, such as the burning of Zozobra (Old Man Gloom), the state fair, the balloon fiesta and our much anticipated chile crop. I also enjoy the Santa Fe Renaissance festival, though it isn't BIG like the other things I have mentioned. Then there is what is kind of the last gasp of Fall festivities - Halloween. Many people consider Thanksgiving to be Fall, but depending on the year - it is too cold to be considered such, at least to me.

I guess I am mostly lamenting the loss of Summer. It is still warm and bright here, but there isn't much time left. That said, I am pretty lucky to live somewhere that there are many bright sunny days even in the middle of winter.

I also think there is some genetic memory that makes us wish Winter never to come. I don't think it matters even if you live somewhere that is mostly warm all year. Our ancestors had no heat, no real light and, for them, the winter must have been absolutely horrible. I think it is in our blood to somewhat fear winter and to wish to keep it away at long as possible. I have never met anyone that doesn't wish for a long Fall and an early Spring, except perhaps a few avid skiers.

I know that in the Fall, especially the early part, I do not feel quite like myself. I almost feel like I am watching things happen from somewhere else, even things I am participating in. Part of it is likely my allergies that make me far more tired than normal, but I also think there is something else there.

Fall is such an in between state. Going from the warmth and light to the cold and dark. It is not a happy change like Spring, when the opposite is true. Even if you don't mind the cold and dark, something about the change causes a disruption. When I was younger, I loved winter but there was still an odd and somewhat fearful feeling this time of year.

Of course, if you are the least bit into the esoteric that is the charm of Fall. The odd and somewhat fearful feeling of the impending change of season and the darkness that seems to descend earlier each night. It is a brief and glorious time!

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