Note: As I mentioned before, I recently asked some friends who love autumn as much as I do to reflect on what made them so excited for autumn to arrive. The answers will be varied and have a different voice each post. Looks like we will have two people per week through October. Who knew that this many people would want to write about it? So, today we welcome CC–writer extraordinaire and my person. The picture in this post is from when she lived in New Jersey for grad school.
A Palestinian and a Honduran are sitting in a northern New Jersey studio on the eve of October 2004. Their meeting is, in fact, apolitical and short of a punch-line. Support group enters the realm of apt descriptions. Graduate school has proven to be less challenging than surviving in the Garden State. They are deprived of an outlet called The Jersey Shore, in which the nation confirms their suspicions about and validates their opinions of the state and its citizens.
And so, as two people seasoned in two other imperfect locations, they look for a diamond to love in the rough. In this case, the diamonds are ablaze in the tree-tops of the fecund land; they permeate the air with an indescribably familiar and paradoxically refreshing smell; they dance slowly and lightly in the cooling temperatures. For a moment we love NJ. There, I admit it. It did happen.
My friend and I acknowledge that Fall is unfamiliar to our senses given the climates of our past residences. Nevertheless, though color and temperature changes have been previously absent in my life and despite my claims of eternal devotion to Summer, Fall is my season. The smell of October is distinct from its 11 associates and is the same to me in every place I have ever lived even where pumpkin, cinnamon, and apples are nonexistent. Manal describes a similar experience.
The future analysts quickly postulate theories. This time, they reach for the stars and land on the zodiac constellation of Libra. Manal explains that astrology generally provides little meaning in her life. However, she asserts, (with the pragmatism characteristic of a Libra), birth signals the final moment that matter organized itself. In Manal’s theorum, the time of year when that occurs is significant for a few reasons: your body recognizes the materialization of that organization in the year’s chronology and in other people.
Wholeheartedly, I embrace her argument because there I am hanging out and enjoying someone else whose atoms finally congealed somewhere between Sept 23 and Oct 22. Most importantly, it is Fall and its smell reminds me constantly that I am alive. My body is electrified by the anniversary of its genesis. The electricity enters my nose and it smells like I’m supposed to be here even though everything else is dying