I always think of my grandmother when the Autumn equinox happens. She used to always get a little "blue" (her term) because of the shortened days and the long nights. She always felt a little blue at dusk, also, because she didn't like the dark hours of night time. I have never understood that really. Dusk is a favorite time of day for me. I love to sit outside and watch the sun slip beneath the horizon. The sun still holds the sky captive with it's light, seemingly forever glowing but fainter and fainter until the night sky prevails. It is such a quiet time as the birds hush their music and chatter. The children go inside as I sit and watch the bats perform their nightly ballet and the crickets and frogs start to blend their voices for a night time chorus.
I love the shortening of days that herald cooler weather and the holiday season to come. I know many people dread the cold weather and snow. I can't say I blame them! After I became an adult and moved away, it was many years before I was home for Christmas during a particularly early cold winter. My blood had thinned from living in the warm climate, and it was a miserably cold experience. But living in the central Texas hill country, I look forward to the cooler months ahead akin to the glee of a child in a snow storm! I love learning which plants go dormant, and watching those that continue growing lush and green during chilly spells. I look forward to my favorite holiday of the year--Thanksgiving.
I feel that as the weather starts to cool down that I am just warming up in the garden. As our northern friends are putting their gardens to bed for the winter, I am getting serious about the plans I have been making during the hot summer months when it was too hot to really work in the garden. That is when I plan the changes I am going to make in the garden design and the ever enlarging of the beds to make room for more growing things.
As I was watering the front flower bed this evening, I disturbed an armadillo. He scared me as much as I scared him. He ran straight to our neighbors flowerbed as I screamed and dropped the hose I was watering with. I never realized they could move so fast! We have seen the signs of one most of the summer. We laughingly say he has been aerating the soil. But it has really been more destructive than that. I have found his den he has made under the gardenia bush beneath the dining room window. I fill it up with soil, and the next morning, it has been freshly dug. I wonder if he thinks that his housework is never done--just as soon as it's finished, it needs to be done all over again. Echoing my thoughts just a few feet away inside the house instead of out.
In case anyone has been wondering, I thought I would give you a skunk update. After 10-15-20 baths (I've lost count) the dogs STILL smell of skunk. It is much better, but I still get a whiff every now and then that sends me running. I bathed them in tomato juice at one point, and they both developed burns on their noses and mouths. Bo had to go on antibiotics for a while because the burns were becoming infected. They cleared up as soon as the antibiotics were in his system for a while. Dawn dishwashing detergent seems to be the best thing for getting rid of the smell. I guess we will try another application this week sometime. I still can't put collars on them, because they just reek of skunk if I do. Another strange thing caused by the skunk...I guess the oil is quite caustic (hence the burns), but the granddaughters were laying with the dogs and broke out in hives from them.
This weekend is going to be DH's annual company dinner. Although I don't enjoy the politics of schmoozing at these things, I look forward to them because they are always someplace fun. For several years we went to San Fransisco. One year we went to Boston, and last year Phoenix. You will never in a million years guess where we get to go this year? Give up? Austin! LOL! I told DH at least we won't have to worry about loosing our luggage. And we still get to stay at a swanky hotel that we would never stay at normally. The Four Seasons is right on Town Lake, so I am looking forward to "getting away" without going away.
As Pam at http://www.penick.net/digging/ says, Fall is more a state of mind than an actual season in Austin...I'm ready!
Happy Autumn everyone!