Autumn is Coming

A beetle with wasp or bee striping on goldenrod

While eating lunch on a bench in Hopewell, an acquaintance strolled by and greeted me. We exchanged hellos. I mentioned the arrival of autumn.

"Oh, this isn't fall," he said. I noted his clothing, slacks and a tired flannel shirt. Flannel is not the fabric of summer.

We returned from Virginia Beach on September 2. We left behind sun-warmed beers at the pool and fly bites by the waves. We traded swimsuits for fleece. New Jersey is heading into fall.

My tomato plants are dropping moldy grey leaves. Asters and goldenrods are in bloom. Resident birds of winter are flocking, and migrants are passing through - a sharp shinned hawk hanging around for a day or so, warblers of all types in the tree line. Virginia Creeper is brilliant red. Our goose down blanket is on the bed. We are unsuccessfully insisting our son wear socks indoors. I'm rummaging in drawers for blaze orange vests.

Autumn is coming.