There is no competition for a sugar maple red, or a birch autumn yellow leaf as it flits to the ground. I know fall to be a time of brilliant end, and I believe this has colored my perspective on death in many ways. Death is not a time to fade to brown and descend to the cold, hard ground below. Death is a time to shine – to show the world what you’re made of in your final moment. New England leaves do it so well, and that’s how I want to live and die.
2. Buttoning Up the House for Winter
This is a Northern ritual. Stacking lawn furniture up against the house. Swapping bug screens for storm windows. Assessing the damage on last winter’s shovels and snow brushes. Filling the sand bins. The annual preparation for war against ice and snow is cathartic.
The honking is the signal that winter is on its way. The weather man does not know the moment the first freeze will hit – but the geese do. Their precision is beautiful.
4. Sam Adams Octoberfest Beer
Some people look forward to their pumpkin spice coffee. But not being a coffee person, I wait in eager anticipation of my favorite beer. It goes down like a smooth, warm blanket to say, “It’s gonna get wicked cold up he-ah, but I got you.”
5. The Last Bonfire
Pairs well with Sam Adams Octoberfest. Getting that last s’more (or S’morsees, if you use Reeses’ Cups) in before the winter months is always a cherished moment. But it’s a bit false, because if we’re honest with ourselves, we know we’re going to be out here doing the same darn thing in January anyways. We’re New Englandahs! It’s what we do!
Jen Schwab is a stoic, yet happy New Englander whom Jesus told to move to Georgia. So now she speaks as an expatriate to educate everyone she meets about the joys and superiority of all things New England. Except Massachusetts. Don’t move there.