Summer is slowly slipping away, and life in the city is taking on a more familiar routine. The kids are back in school. Swimsuits are packed away until June for those not fortunate enough to have a Caribbean holiday on the calendar. Friday traffic to the Jersey Shore has reverted from agonizing to tolerable, and if you're lucky (or unfortunate) enough to have a car, finding parking on the weekends is competitive again. Rather than spending lazy Sundays with a towel and beach chair far from home, we now gird ourselves in hometown colors and join like-minded compatriots in raucous celebrations of the shared values of beer, nachos, and football. The lingering rays of sunset will soon be replaced by the neons of Broadway, fully lit once more, and the Metropolitan Opera season opens on September 26th. The dog days have faded, and the literary, cultural, and artistic entertainments that are the heritage of every New Yorker take center stage in our lives once more.
Rejoice, New York! Your days of idleness and ease are past, and you now return to your natural state of industry, bustle, and haste. Oh, and did I mention football season started?
But for some, there are other reasons to cheer the approach of autumn. The forests to the north and west will soon be more colorful than the inside of Buffalo Wild Wings on a Sunday afternoon; an explosion of yellows, oranges, and reds. And far more peaceful. Formerly steamy nights will become cool enough to sleep, and a campfire will provide a welcoming warmth. For these plucky souls, there is delight in packing air conditioning units and beach umbrellas into storage and pulling out 20 degree sleeping bags and merino baselayers. Streams that have been low will fill again, and the plump brown and brook trout that have sought shelter from August’s heat will begin to stir and feed before their fall spawning.
Linger a little longer in the outdoors, New Yorkers. Relish the shorter days and invigorating crisp nights. Feel the crunch of the fallen leaves on the trail under your boots and drink the panorama of color in the canopy. Gather round a campfire with companions to warm yourselves and laugh at those who returned to the city too soon. You probably can’t get tickets to Hamilton until January anyway.