Friday, October 10, 2008
It’s a good thing that autumn is my favorite time of year.
Because the change of seasons, the crisp nights, the spirit-lifting scents of fall and an overall feeling of comfort that it brings to me is sorely needed this year.
Let’s face it, these are the times that try men’s — and women’s — souls.
The war in Iraq staggers on and we continue to lose valiant men and women who have been sent into battle on less-than-truthful premises.
Terroristic threats always hover at our shoulders.
The dangerous, pointless name-calling and fear-mongering being espoused by some of our candidates running for the top positions in our country foment some people to a state where the unspeakable could occur.
Just watch some of those rallies where yahoos are yelling such things as “kill him” and “terrorist” when references to actions of more than 40 years ago are spewed in an effort to link a candidate, somehow, to those days — and then tell me if your blood doesn’t run a bit cold.
I don’t care how much you wink and smile; those types of attacks reveal an ugliness deep inside.
It doesn’t matter which party stoops to such levels; either should look hard into the mirror and see how despicable they’ve become.
Beyond the theatrics of the election, you have more immediate worries these days.
Will my job be there tomorrow? Can I stretch my paycheck enough to pay all of my bills? If I fall ill, will my health care actually cover all of the sky-high costs? Will I lose my home?
Is there anything left in my 401(k) and other investments that I thought one day would allow me to retire? Will there be any Social Security by the time I get there?
Forget about taking a vacation or splurging on even a small “extra.” You find yourself praying that your car keeps running, your appliances don’t give up the ghost and your home doesn’t need any major repairs.
You hold your breath when you open your utility bills and you wonder how you’ll heat your home this winter.
And, of course, the holidays are approaching.
OK, I’ve depressed everyone enough. I’ll stop.
But that brings me back to autumn.
For me, it’s that special season that’s not too hot and not bone-chillingly cold. It’s great for taking walks, sitting outside by an open fire and putting up Halloween decorations.
You can walk on one of the many area trails, drink in the beauty of the changing leaves and breathe in the spice-like air.
It’s a time that I find I can clear my mind simply by being outside and taking stock of what’s truly important.
Autumn provides a respite from the heat and humidity of a long summer and slowly preps us for short winter days.
It’s the perfect refresher, restorer and rejuvenator.
And it couldn’t come at a better time as we try to find our way through these stressful, uncertain days.