Every year about this time I grow nostalgic. As a rule, I love living in the South. But when the beginning of school rolls around and we're still running the air conditioning twenty-four hours a day - every day, I begin to long for autumn in Ohio. I just can't seem to help myself. I miss waiting for the school bus on crisp, fall mornings. I miss new sweaters and football games. I miss seeing the fog roll off the pond when the cool air brushes against the warm water. And the leaves. I miss deciduous trees. Don't get me wrong; live oaks, with their massive spreading limbs, have their charm. But they don't change colors. I daydream of playing in the mountainous piles of leaves in the neighbor's front yard.
Really, do you think kids can grow into normal, healthy adults when they've never bundled up and huddled together on freezing bleachers at a football game? Aren't you scarred for life when, instead of sweaters and coats, you wear shorts and flip-flops to the season opener? No matter how long I live here, I can't wrap my mind around wearing tank tops to football games in the end of September. It just doesn't compute. The calendar says it's fall, but the temperatures are unmistakably summer-like.
Eventually, fall arrives here too and gives way to a winter of sorts. And then I decide I'm glad I'm not in the North. Really, wearing coats and gloves is way over-rated. No boots to find. No snow to shovel. No gray, dreary skies for days or weeks on end.
So, I've come to expect my season of nostalgia. And like all other seasons, it too will pass - only to come again next year.