What is it about fall?

Who writes about their favorite season? You'd think this was a fourth grade essay assignment. Worse, that I have nothing better to do than darn socks and brush my cat's teeth. What can I say, autumn inspires me. If summer is about the sun and beach with long hot days of endless activities, then fall reminds me of the pause. The weather crisps and the leaves change into fiery colors. It's about going on road trips to fairs, hay rides, apple orchards, and hikes. It's the mark of the harvest season and better still, ushers in the holiday trifecta of Halloween, followed by Thanksgiving with the culmination into Christmas.

You have to start dressing in layers. Some people swear by the heat, but I've always hated it. Best yet, fall means tons of photographic opportunities. For as long as I live on the East Coast I won't pass the fall season without a ritual road trip to New York's Finger Lakes region. Skaneateles, Ithaca, Hammondsport, Letchworth State Park... I can't stop returning to these idyllic destinations. Another destination favorite is Provincetown.

Living in New York City all my life, the pendulum finally swung the other way and I've come to appreciate the smaller scale of towns and villages. It pulls to my subconscious calling for a simpler way of living. As I get older I feel the need to un-complicate myself. It's a reaction to the big changes that have recently happened in my life and the changes about to come (a promotion at work, my 84-year-old father coming to live with me next year, my retirement plans, emerging health issues).

In many ways, I've entered the autumn stage of life. While I'm nowhere near the end, I've been far along enough to see the end in the distance - a blurry dot, faint but ineluctable. I'm determined not to finish this entry on such a glum note, especially when I still have so many places to visit crowned in this season, and all the other seasons, which in my estimation, must all bow to fall.

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