The approach of Fall is a bittersweet time here on the Southern Oregon Coast. Tourists pack up and leave; restaurants begin to cut their hours; school busses crowd you on the road. License plates from California, Nevada and Washington State start to dwindle. And folks who remain on the road drive more cautiously.
It is still sunny here, and though we've had a few incidents of rain, they have not changed the pattern of our sprinkling system. September weather is just like June's and July's. Yesterday, driving home from Coos in the afternoon, we turned the air conditioning unit in the car to keep us from overheating. Houses do not have air-conditioning.
Even hitchhikers and bike riders are getting scarce. Young people with cardboard signs indicating Eureka, San Francisco or Reno as their final destination, have caught their rides and gone south. Birds are beginning to stop on the lake. They don't wait too long though; they must smell something I do not. They are heading South too. Later, loons and various other fowl will settle down to winter on Lake Garrison, sharing space with travelers from Canada and Alaska.
By December, whales will frolick in the cold waters, feed their young and rest on their way to Baja. Many of our residents tend to do the same thing.
My pears and apples are ripening. Each day I bring in a barrel. Each day, I wash, cut, and slice. Each day, a batch or two get frozen for later use; a batch gets chopped up even further for cakes and muffins; a batch gets dried up in the dehydrator. I know this bounty means the end of summer, but I want more time to soak up the warmth, to experience lungful of marine layer, to play in the dirt, to chew tender beans and crispy cucumbers, to walk to the beach, to watch sunsets on the deck as late as ten p.m., followed by stargazing that goes on all night.
I want more of this season, of lush growth, of careless indulgences.