There comes a day of the year, every year, when the passing season is irrefutable and I can no longer pretend it's still summer. If that day wasn't yesterday when I put on a sweater, it is today when my hands are chilly indoors, I wonder whether the furnace needs cleaning, I am again wearing a sweater, and my wife is padding about in thick slippers. Wearing layers is strange after five or six months; the soft bulk feels artificial and inhibiting. At the same time, I feel an odd comfort in the clinginess of cold-weather clothes. Perhaps because I'm thin, the layers make me feel of more substantial bearing, and even more grown up. Hot weather invokes the boy in me.
I mourn summer's demise, hard. No more afternoon jaunts to the lake with my dog, wading into the water up to my knees and frolicking with her, then tearing into town and darting into Starbucks, water shoes squishing, for an icy Java Chip Frappucino. Instead, now is the six-month (or longer) interruption until I can stroll outside at night in shorts, no climatic barrier between nature and shelter. I talk the right talk for a northeasterner: All the seasons are good, each in its own way, and I wouldn't want to live in a monoseasonal climate. But the truth is that I rail against the passing of summer and welcome the passing of winter. Thank goodness for the new-again pleasure of sweaters and slippers; they get me over the hump and keep a good grip on me until the blessed return of summer.