I'm not necessarily a believer in the old English Proverb, "All good things must come to an end". I think there are exceptions of an eternal nature. However when the subject is summer, the words ring true.
This past weekend was our last scheduled summer event. A reunion at one of our favorite lakes. It was wonderful to be with family and the view, as always, was beauteous, but the air felt different - subtle changes dancing in the atmosphere.
Some not so subtle ones as well. When sand started flying in our faces with stinging ferocity, lightning flashing in the sky, I knew those last carefree hours of relaxing in the sun, while the kids played on the beach, I had envisioned, would not be coming to pass. I felt robbed of an annual rite of passage.
The next day, as we were driving through the canyon, making the long journey back home, I noticed leaves already changing color on the scrub oak. Sure, we had comforted ourselves as we were leaving, saying we'd try to make it back one more time, so we could still have that last day with the sunshine bouncing off our heads, toes luxuriating in soft, warm sand, but it was just talk. Deep down we knew the truth - we wouldn't be coming back. Not this year.
Along the way, we passed by our Alma Mater. Evidence of fall semester was everywhere. The dorm parking lots were full, and new college students were roaming around campus gettting their bearings straight. For a moment I was transported back again, filled with the excitement of newly found independence and the unknown. That fresh, away from home for the first time, feeling. Completely enveloped in possibility. I wanted to stop and tarry for a while, absorb that energy, but we kept on driving.
As we drove along, talking, our plans started to evolve. We were no longer devising a way to capture one last day at the beach, but rather contemplating an upcoming weekend in our favorite college town. A fall football game. In my mind I could already picture us walking around campus, colorful tree canopies overhead, leaves crunching underfoot, visiting all of our favorite haunts of yesterday, our future still ripe upon the horizon.
And, for me, in that moment of shifting focus, summer gracefully surrendered.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.