Although Labor Day has come and gone, as it does every year, I am always amazed at how so many of my neighbors actually think that, with the passing of Labor Day, forecasted cooler temperatures should be de rigueur on the part of those weather mavens out there in charge of our climate.
Hate to be the bearer of bad news but Labor Day does not constitute an official change of seasons. Yeah, it means that the kids will soon be going back to school, parking spaces will slowly start to reappear as beach traffic eases up, the Q53 bus will pass through Broad Channel on its way to Rockaway and will not be mistaken for a circus clown car, and the lifeguards will disappear from their Starship Enterprise Shuttle Craft stations along the boardwalk. Does that mean summer is over? Most certainly not, or at least not just yet.
We are, however, fast approaching September 22 and the Autumnal Equinox, which will officially mark the passing of summer and the start of our fall season. It is one of only two days throughout the year when the earth's axis is tilted neither toward nor away from the sun, resulting in a "nearly" equal amount of daylight and darkness at all latitudes. The "nearly" equal hours of day and night is due to refraction of sunlight or a bending of the light's rays that causes the sun to appear above the horizon when the actual position of the sun is below the horizon.
And then my good friends, the hours of daylight will dwindle while the hours of darkness expands its reach. The leaves on the trees will blaze with color and then die, dropping from their branches to the ground below as brown mulch. Now I fully realize that there are many of you out there who claim to "love" the fall season. You know, the crispness of the air, the sound of crickets chirping in the daytime, the smell of burning fireplaces, and all that. As far as I am concerned, autumn is a spectacle of decline, deterioration, and bereavement in the knowledge with the falling temperatures, home heating oil prices will start to rise. It is also a not so gentle reminder that the low skies of November and winter nor'easters are not far behind.
That being said, as much as I dislike the fall (and winter), it is continual rain that really serves to throw me into a tizzy. The almost non-stop rain we experienced a few weeks ago had my beloved Grace ("She who must be obeyed") so depressed that she spent days sorrowfully looking through the window. Thankfully the rain stopped after three days and I finally let her in. Happy Fall y'all!
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