Last week, 90-degree days turned my Keene State classrooms into saunas; this weekend, the coming and going of Exaggerated Earl brought a welcome break in the weather, with this week being a golden paradise of sunny, mild days with daytime temperatures in the 70s.
This is, I think, my favorite time of year, when the sun still shines like summer while the temperature eases into an almost-autumnal briskness. This morning when I walked Reggie just after dawn, I wore a lightweight fleece atop my summer shirt-sleeves: the first taste of fall layers. The morning light had a strange, almost smoky orange tint, as if the sun itself were metallic and every surface it touched were burnished: an odd autumnal alchemy.
During the summer, the sun shines unabated; come fall, the skies turn pyrotechnic, casting sharply defined shadows through a strange sheen of slants and angles. No sky is bluer than an autumn sky, and no light is more golden. September days seem to know they are precious: in addition to the summer sounds of keening crickets, these transitional days brim with the sound of single-engine planes guided by pilots making the most of warm and waning days. These are the year’s golden days, and nothing gold can stay.