The Seasonal Aisle

Mother Nature has made life interesting this year; between earthquakes, hurricanes, and freak October snow storms, I’m not sure what, if anything is left.

In August we learned that it’s possible to feel an earthquake in Pennsylvania, how to batten down the hatches, and that even though we were minus two trees, we still ended up with three times as many branches as our neighbors on either side. I am certain the entire neighborhood breathed a sigh of relief when the four-foot tall pile of sticks was finally removed from the curb.

We’d been enjoying the mild fall and the beauty of the slowly turning leaves. In particular I was enjoying the fact that we still hadn’t had a hard freeze, and although that  may not be great for allergies or killing off the mosquitoes, it was easy on the wallet because I didn’t have to turn the heat on.  The saved dollars on the heating bill danced in my head like massages, pedicures, and plane tickets for the holidays.

My bubble was burst when I heard them use the four letter word in the forecast…snow.

“Snow? It’s not even Halloween!” I exclaimed at my reflection in the mirror.

Sure enough the forecast held true and we received more than a few inches of snow. Not all of it stuck, but it was enough that the township called out the snowplows and set up an emergency shelter (lots of people lost power and for more than a few days).  Thanks to Bobby the tree guy, my landlord, and the neighbor I had a nice pile of firewood at my disposal and a roaring fire to help warm the house as snow poured out of the sky and the temperature dropped.

The next day, I went for a walk.  The sun was shining as brightly as it does in summertime, there were flowers still in bloom, and the grass was green, at the same time there was snow on the ground and a mixture of green, gold, red, and orange in the leaves above me.  It was like Mother Nature had taken the lead from retail, and I was standing in the seasonal aisle looking at a barrel of flip flops on clearance, the supply of Halloween candy dwindling, and holiday merchandise edging its way onto the shelves.

Today is crisp and sunny, a picture perfect fall day. I’m still disturbed by the leftover merchandise from summer and Halloween lined up next to turkeys, Christmas lights, and holiday decorations in the grocery store, but at least Mother Nature seems to have returned to her senses.

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