Sept. 29, 2022 — I don’t ever remember such a profound shift from summer 80s to the windy, wet and cold of fall. It is beautiful — these days of big clouds over hillsides with the first hints of orange. Of huge waves scouring clean the remnants of summer beach fires, sand castles and footprints. We wake up to thick fog banks settled over Little Traverse Lake that are tinged with pink from the red sunrise. The afternoons filled with the soothing wet paint green of the ferns, grasses, leaves during a rain.
My swimsuit is quickly buried under flannel shirts in my clothes pile. We’ve raced to get the most fragile beach and boat stuff tucked away. After a few days living in a cool house with plenty of moisture working through clothes and covers, I lit the pilot light to the gas fireplace and let the flames soar. And in one day, it seemed that every northern soul was wearing pants. We could not have coordinated better through a giant group text.
Steph and I are having the best time since the weather changed shopping for a wood stove. She ponders styles and colors and locations, and calculates the many ways heating with wood will beat back the rising cost of natural gas. I dream of tinkering with the fire and blasting the heat on a freezing winter night. And then there is the timeless rhythm of firewooding in the north: cutting, splitting and stacking. The bite of chainsaws and saw dust sprinkled on freshly fallen leaves. And the feel of swinging an ax and the smell of fresh split wood.
Fall is sweet to all the senses.