“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.”
– F Scott Fitzgerald
Here in Chicago, it’s finally turned to autumn – chillier days and nights, rainy, gloomy mornings, brisk, golden afternoons, leaves falling, Halloween decorations popping up in the neighborhoods, days getting shorter and darker, and sweaters and the classic Chicago all-black uniform of jacket, hoodie, and jeans that tends to permeate Logan Square this time of year. When September was filled with hot, sunny days my friends would complain about the lack of autumn weather, despite knowing that on the heels of autumn comes Chicago winter, a decidedly tougher time of year for the city.
But there’s something about autumn.
Les Alycamps, 1888 by Vincent Van Gogh
It’s a beautiful season, cozy, gloomy, and there’s something incredibly distinct about the door it opens to a folding, dank, turning season as we begin to hunker down for the holidays and winter. While sometimes – particularly around February – it would be nice to live in a sunnier, warmer place, autumn is a time of year where it feels lucky to be here in the city.
If autumn is a season you enjoy, take some time to practice presence and gratitude this season. Autumn contains an abundance of physical sensations to take pleasure in: the brisk of the air, the softness of your blanket, the warmth and bitter of your tea, the glow of lights and candles, the sound of leaves scattering and crunching. Really existing in these moments places you outside the busy-ness of thinking, however momentarily, and instills a sense of quiet peace that is reflective of this time of year.
Falling Autumn Leaves, 1888 by Vincent Van Gogh