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I’m writing today, just because. Because I love writing, and I love Heather. Just because it’s almost October and change is everywhere. The trees, the clothes in my closets and shoes on my feet. There is change in the foods on our table, the light at dinnertime, the sound of school buses on the street; 7:15am and it’s the Middle School, which returns at 2:45 and the high school bus roars by at 8:00am, back again at 3:20, or thereabout. There is change in the house as my boy navigates his Senior year online, via a virtual high school so that there is no more despair trudging to a bus that takes him to a school where he’s never connected with anyone; a despair that leaves my strong boy in tears sometimes, who begged for a change. And this change? This is good. My boy is content, focused, happy. Focused. You should see this boy concentrate on his school work. I am in awe. And so proud of him. There is change in me. My iced tea pitcher lays abandoned, the electric teakettle hums now for me each afternoon, and Sir Earl Gray has returned, kindling our chilly weather love affair with bergamot and steam. The salad days are gone, and the oven sings and whirs and the sugar has disappeared from our cupboards because I bake sweet things for sweet men who love me. There are apples. It is Fall. My head swirls with possibility. I finger the skins, red and taut, dreaming of crisps, cakes, bars, breads. And the breadmaker stands on the counter, and grinds out a loaf, filling the house with warm yeast, a tall dome rising on the countertop, burnished crust and heady crumb. I think, as I savor the flavor, that there is not enough sweet cream butter in the world for my bread addiction. There is change in me. Did I say that already? Fall does that; the melancholy it brings, the sense of impending cold and snow (which I love) and the way that Winter forces me to stop, to think, to dream as I gaze on the white landscape, to slow down and appreciate the warmth of home and flickering candles and knitting. And soup. I miss soup by the time September rolls around. There are different birds in the yard that I watch carefully, noting their features and comparing them to the book kept close at hand. Migration fascinates me, the instinct that drives creatures from warmth to warmth, seeking the means that nature has to sustain them. I am always seeking new birds to add to my list. The garden has certainly changed. We had frost, and it nipped the tops of the plants, but left the fruit intact. Tomatoes are ripening from sheer will, I believe. The peppers too. Herbs survived, and thrive in the cool September. I cross my fingers that it makes it to my table, sweet and luscious. It does. And I am grateful. By now, by early October, I am ready to bid the garden goodbye, as bittersweet as it is. Change. It’s good. It’s normal. It happens and we roll with it. From season to season, month upon changing month, moon phase from a slim sickle to a full round orb of light, we shift through change, mostly without knowing. I embrace and revel in it.