I am starting to get a little nervous. Fall is here and is about to make way for winter and I am not going to take this very well. I am a summer girl through and through and as each passing day and each falling leaf remind me that shorter days and colder nights are inevitable – my sweet little disposition is beginning to sour just a bit. Two hundred and sixty days – give or take – until summer is upon us again – two hundred and some odd days before I can consistently ride that Harley in the hot summer sun…..I just don’t like the math…..
Chicago is such a summer town in my mind. The festivals and the ballgames, the parades, out door dining (outdoor drinking for that matter), long warm nights and endless roads to put some hot sunny miles on that little thing called a Harley. It seems there is a call to get out and get around and meet up with friends no matter what day of the week it may be. Andersonville comes alive with back lot bashes and hot chicks taking over the streets for Midsommerfest and more. There is camping – even for the first timer forced to trade in her Hyatt pass key for the great outdoors. There are cargo shorts and tank tops, flip flops and cool ass shades. There are those toned arms and perfect shoulders that come out from under the hoodies to give us a chance to count just how many tattoos those girls had all under wraps all winter long. The lakefront gives us awesome running paths and biking routes. A scenic skyline like no other this country can boast rises as a backdrop to those lazing around under blue skies on a patch of green grass holding hands and talking trash with the one they love. Chicago is such a summer town.
By mid September it starts to dawn on me that maybe summer might actually be a thing of the past and fall’s meager attempt to delay the inevitable is simply not good enough for me. Ok we have the Bears on Sunday and the women of CMSA doing that flag football thing that they do. We have the leaves turning comically brilliant with color that warrant an “oooh” and an “aahhh”…as we cruise past them on what is sure to be one of our final bike runs of the season. The air is crisp and the not so faint of heart are picking and baking those apples into some decadent but appreciated treat which taste so much better in autumn. There are of course those down comforters which invite us to stay in bed just a little longer and never leave their warm embrace. Oh and there has to be a shout out to the much too big man sweaters that warm us and cover every little imperfection from the inside out. There is the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown and tricks or treats (damn you Baby Ruth) for everyone and there are the inevitably premature Christmas decorations popping up all over the place. Days are shorter and oh so much darker and Harley rides are too few and far between.
And on the morning that we wake up and see the first fallen snow of the upcoming marathon winter season – we take a quiet moment to acknowledge the beauty and stillness of it all. Virgin white snow covering the long, still tree branches and cold blowing clouds of breath coming from our mouths as we quietly whisper how perfect the world looks when covered in a blanket of snow. And if you are someone like me, you turn your back on Mother Nature and you turn back towards the damn garage. You take your time and walk towards the quiet dark corner and touch the cold handle bars of your precious ride, shed a little tear, and start counting the days till summer.
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About K. Guzman
Kathy grew up all over the US - lots of east coast time. She is a surfer girl with an unabridged curiosity. A woman whose mid life awakening continues to bring her to the place she was meant to be. Her degree in Journalism/Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida is being yanked from the archives and put to good use. Her two kids are grown and rock stars in this wild world – her Harley is ready for some serious summer miles – and her heart remains open to life, women and the possibilities each day brings.