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My ideas are constantly changing as I learn. Sometimes they even change midway through writing a post.

Tuesday, October 12

My favorite time of year

It's a beautiful day. It's sunny, just at that temperature where you could wear jeans or shorts depending on how active you are, and fairly dry (not humid).

As a kid, I looked forward to this time of year because it followed Summer, and Summer meant drowning in your own sweat. See, in a place where air conditioning is considered a necessity, my family was too poor to have it. Believe it or not, it is possible to survive 103F(39.4C) without air-conditioning - one just has to wear fewer clothes ("nothing" is best, but generally I'd at least wear a bikini). A good fan helps too. And not moving much. Luckily, it rarely got quite that hot. Somewhere between 95F (35C) and 100F(37.7C) was more likely.

Then, near September, school would start. The weather didn't cool off much in September, but pants were required. I dreaded the long bus rides. Still, even with the lack of air-conditioning and the stress of wondering whether I'd be able to get a seat or get picked on by bullies (I did live on the wrong side of the highway, after all), I looked forward to school. Most of the kids and teachers were nicer than my family, and summers in the middle of nowhere when you have nothing are BORING. Ok, we didn't quite have nothing. I remember week long games of Monopoly, uncountable games of solitaire, headaches from spending 12 hours at a time reading, and hours and hours of Soaps. A break from school was nice, but I was ready for summer to be over after a few weeks.

October, though, was better. That's when the weather finally cooled down a bit, the teachers had possibly moved onto something besides review, and I'd probably had a chance to bring home a few dozen library books. What I was thinking about most, though, was moving. It suddenly became comfortable to move - to be active without risking heat stroke (or at least being very uncomfortable). I loved weekends when I could run around out in our field - pretending to be animals hiding in the tall grass, playing soccer or tag or just running for the sheer joy of feeling the cool air.

Even now - years after I have become used to air conditioning and being comfortable most of the time - I still look forward to this time of year. I still associate the coolness outside with energy and excitement and learning.

Lately, though I also associate it with pumpkins (try the seeds roasted with a bit of garlic, salt, and cayenne pepper if you like - mmmmmm). They're also pretty fun to test out one's artistic talents... or just make something goofy and fun.