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Sayonara, Summer!

Some people I know look at the passing of summer with regret. They ruefully wave goodbye to days of sunshine and warmth; they heave great sighs when the temperatures take a final drop. Not me.

I revel in Autumn. I glory in it. I adore the change of the season. I’m ecstatic when I get to put away the tee shirts and capris and pull out the sweaters and jeans. Out come the scarves and hats and jackets. It’s great!

I know, I know…in a few months it will be winter. And I’ll be sick of the cold weather and snow by January, itching to bring back flip flops and tank tops.

But I just want to take a moment to enjoy the present. Let’s just revel in this moment, shall we?

...Oh, wait. Not this exact moment. For even though Summer is officially over, and Fall has arrived, our week here in Pittsburgh was still in the low 80's. That's right. Hmph.

Well, my consolation is that the evenings are cool, chilly enough even for, say, a fire; and soon enough the cooler days will be here, too. Days of air as crisp as gala apples; of trees filled with glorious colors; of crunchy withered leaves underfoot. There's just something so deliciously melancholy about this time of year--whether it's the blaze of color before everything dies, or the harvesting of the last crops before the ground lies fallow for winter, or the promise that stillness and barrenness, at least for a season, is just around the corner.

And yet, there's a richness to the season, too: the scents of cinnamon, decaying leaves, and smoky fires; the vibrant oranges, golds, and scarlets that adorn the trees , bushes, and our tables; the cozy textures of knitted warmth that we wrap around ourselves to keep warm. There is the giving of thanks, and the time spent with family. There are hayrides. Caramel apples. Trick-or-treaters. Scarecrows. Pumpkins. Pilgrims. Squash. Indian Corn. Plymouth Reenactments. Turkeys. Turkeys made from a traced hand. Leaf rubbings. Mashed potatoes. Bonfires. Leaf piles...to jump in. Colorful scarves.

...And so many other things. It's only just begun, and I'm already dying to take it all in.

*Sigh.* I love Fall. Did I mention that already?


Dear Diary

Yesterday was the kind of day that almost makes me wish I kept a diary. I do write in a journal from time to time, but it's mostly filled with emotional and mental angst. Like the rest of my life.

But anyway, the day was kind of cool. I went out to the Highland Games up in Ligonier. What's not to love about a place and event so filled with people who share my deep and abiding affinity for all things Scottish? To quote a tee I saw several times throughout the day, "If it's nae Scottish, it's crap!"

I've never heard so much bagpiping in one day. I can still hear it in the back of my head, "Scotland the Brave," just like the ocean after a day at the beach. It was awesome! Also, it was gratifying to see so many guys wearing kilts. I loves the kilts! (Picture by Victornado, on Flickr)

We got to watch cabertossing and a rugby match. Both fun.

Also, I tried new things. On the tame end of the spectrum, I had some British candy. On the wilder, more adventurous end (but not really), I sampled whisky and tried es cargot. (We ended up at this restaurant called The Road Toad....the name is deceptive. It was actually kind of fancy. So much so that the prices didn't have dollar signs, and they wouldn't let us split the check.)

If you’re wondering what the verdict on my new experiences is, I’ll oblige: the whisky was strong and burned going down, but it felt good on my throat, which had been (and is still) scratchy, like I’m coming down with something. (Ugh! I hate getting sick.) The es cargot was actually pretty good…not something I would eat on a regular basis, but I’m glad I tried it.

And sometimes you just need to take a day like that and live life to the hilt, even if the next day you sleep in late and do nothing because you’re exhausted and getting sick. So I’m glad my Saturday was amazing and fun, and I wish everyone a Highland day once in a while.