If you were around the Internet much last month, you were probably slammed with October love. Everyone was loving on not just fall as a season, but October as the embodiment of that season. Everyone suddenly started quoting Anne of Green Gables and gushing about how lucky we are to live in a world where there are Octobers. (Resisting urge to turn this into a post all about how you can’t trust Internet quotes taken out of context. I can find no actual citation for the quote “attributed” to Camus about fall being a second spring where every leaf is a flower.* Even if he did say that, it was probably sandwiched in between things no one wants superimposed on a pretty photo about the meaninglessness of life. And that Hamlet quote about love that supposedly exists? False. Let’s go back to finding quotes in books, rather than the internet, deal?)
Confession: October is kind of a lame tease, and I am so thankful to live in a world where October mercifully gives way to November.
Every year I, like the rest of the world, get prematurely excited about fall. September 1st rolls around and I am putting pumpkin in everything and throwing back seasonal Starbucks beverages at an alarming rate. I too am guilty of Instagramming every read leaf I saw during those September weeks.
And then October comes, and we all act like fall comes with it.Maybe it does… in places other than where I live. Because in DC, and in a lot of other places, October is just a fickle tease, where the leaves hover a greenish yellow, and the temperature waffles between hot, and just cool enough to make you think you can wear a scarf and sweater and then you sweat all day long and have to dry-clean pit stains. Every year we think October means committed fall, but it just doesn’t. We can’t count on October. And premature season excitement leads to Starbucks Christmas cups before we even get through Halloween. I think we can all agree on the tragedy in that. But November? November can be trusted. November blows in with cold drizzles, grey days, and carpets of colorful leaves on every sidewalk. November brings chilly nights and golden late afternoons. November is Thanksgiving and cornucopias and pilgrims. November is committed to being fall, and I love it for that. Last week I went for a run and couldn’t get over all the beautiful leaves carpeting our neighborhood. I grabbed my camera and headed back out for some pictures…
… but then I decided that wasn’t enough and I spent an eternity gathering leaves of every hue to drag back to our apartment and arrange on my table.Totally an excellent use of my time.
Thanks November, for kicking October to the curb.
*Update: A French lit studying friend succeeded in finding the reference that has become that quote. In the second act of Le Malentendu, a character asks another what fall is and the response is “Another spring where all the leaves are like flowers.” While this quote is in one of the few positive passages, the optimistic character who says it is soon killed by his sister. Because this is Camus, and that’s how he rolls.