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Small Talk: Fall speed ahead

All right, good readers. You have my permission to break out the pumpkins, autumn leaves, and Halloween décor. Let’s get this party started.

This year, here in the land with no seasons, I still knew when fall began. There was a subtle change — a crispness, a bit less daylight. The mornings required my flannel bathrobe. The temperature has only varied by a few degrees, but there is no denying it.

I tend to chafe about getting into the fall holidays too soon because I hang on to summer with a death grip. I go into mourning as the last of our glorious summer tomatoes come off the vine. But this year, I gave summer a smooch and let it go, with a minimum of pouting. Doubt me? I bought some ceramic pumpkins last week.

Not long ago, as my daughter’s wedding approached, we were still wearing summer-weight clothes and, well, sweating … a lot. We were agonizing over how we would keep the champagne cold and the cupcake icing from melting. The wedding day, in late September, was sweltering and humid.

But last week, I had to iron some long-sleeved blouses, put on long pants, and even wore some sweaters. I haven’t given up my sandals yet, but I did give a quick review to my closed-toe shoe collection.

And the final, absolute sign of the seasons? I have contemplated Christmas. I have even done a bit of Christmas shopping, which is risky. I have a bad habit of hiding early purchases, only to stumble over them the next summer.

So light those pumpkin spice candles, stock the shelves with cocoa mix and get ready to hide those perfectly polished toenails.

But wait. The ocean temperature is still 70 degrees. So maybe we’ll sneak in just one or two more beach visits, eh? Just don’t tell your East Coast relatives.

Jean Gillette is a freelance writer and incorrigible fan of summertime. Contact her at [email protected].