September – The Real New Year Celebration
The View from My Hill
More than any other time of year, September’s signs are all around us that another year has ended, and a new one begins.
Someone recently posted the school supply list for Hurley Middle School on social media. Not only did it remind me of the excitement I always felt when my parents took me to get my new school supplies (note to self: go to Staples and stock up on new office supplies), but it also reminded me once again that September should be celebrated as the start of the New Year – not January 1.
Summer is over. The life guard chairs at our beaches stand empty; their sentries headed back to college.
We watch as parents, school shopping complete, gratefully load their offspring on the school bus. Indeed at some school bus stops a celebration ensues that rival’s many a New Year’s Eve celebration – only at this party, the little noisemakers are on their way to school!
September, for the most part, is the end of the 3-H days (hazy, hot and humid), and the beginning of cooler weather. Except for some die hard males, we put the shorts away and pull out the sweaters. We keep a wary eye on the weather forecasts now, since September can bring some of the fiercest storms to Southern New England.
September also signals the beginning of the end of the gardening season. Home gardeners think about cleaning up those plants that have stopped producing, and decide what to do with any remaining vegetables. Our first frost doesn’t usually happen here in Seekonk until the middle of October, but we know it isn’t too far off. Vegetables from a home garden taste great in the middle of winter so we, in one way or another, attempt to preserve the bounty. We are marking the end of one season and the beginning of another.
If we didn’t have a calendar, we would be able to tell that the end of the summer is near by the color of the pumpkins in the garden. Their bright orange hue signals that we most certainly will see houses in the neighborhood decorated with witches and goblins soon. Pumpkins will be set out on stoops, hoping to be spared the pranks of mischievous teens. The holiday season is beginning.
In a few short weeks, the hummingbirds that have been taking their nourishment at the feeder off the back porch will soon be on their way to the south coast of Florida, Louisiana or Texas – a rest stop on their way to Central America. They know their time up here in the north is coming to end by the length of the daylight. They don’t need a calendar. They have their sign.
And last but certainly not least, every football fan in New England celebrates the New Year in September. Our beloved football team is back on the field!