Back to school - that's what September has always been around here. In Boston, all the college students return, with their energy and verve, the vibrant music they play on the sidewalks around where D lives, and also their noise, crowding and indifference to older residents. For the much younger set, my work colleagues have been emailing around pictures of their children on their first days of school - the elementary school kids anxious or enthusiastic, the teenagers sullen or indulging their parents with a reluctant smile for the camera.
Despite the demarcation of the Labor Day weekend (the weekend that holds the first Monday of September), life is more fluid for me. I work full time in all seasons, and the summer is just hotter than the rest of the year. Our work isn't seasonal. But the longer days of light do give summer a sense of abundant time, the non-work hours more open for leisure and adventure. The same number of non-work hours in the fall and winter just don't translate to the same sense of plenty. But the fall has its own grace, the consolations of increasing quiet and inward-looking time - outside of work hours anyway.
The last weeks of summer are the busiest as we try to cram in everything we have not gotten around to doing but wanted to do before the summer is over. D and I went down to Providence for WaterFire the weekend before last. We'd gone a few years ago, D's first experience of WaterFire, always the most memorable (I'd been a dozen years earlier, and several times since, because I used to live closer by). We opted for the train this time, which took less than half an hour and dropped us off right at the RiverWalk area (even better, the train got us back without a sleepy~1 hour 15 minute drive home). And we got to see it in daylight before the lighting, which started while we were having a luscious dinner in one of the nearby restaurants.
This past weekend, Labor Day holiday weekend, we stayed closer to home, taking the T over to East Boston on the other side of the harbor with friends to see the Piers Point park and marina/shipyard area with its HarborArts installations. Piers Point is a lovely park with great views of the city and the harbor, so it's a great spot for wedding photos for the locals. We saw four or five different wedding parties having their pictures taken in the park at one point or another while we were in Eastie.
On Sunday evening, we walked over to the river to watch the sun set over the Charles River.
The sun sets noticeably earlier now. There is little time from when I come home from work until dusk falls, the light begins to slant lower in the afternoon, and in three months' time the sun will have set before I even leave the office. So we begin to savor the light and the relative warmth (well, today it was over 90°F [>32°C], so quite overly warm). The nights begin get crisp and cool. The crickets chirrup through my open windows. Even with plenty of warm days this time of year, the summer clothes get put away, out of place for the season. A new palette for both cloth and landscape.
More pics from WaterFire Providence.
More pics from Labor Day Weekend (still uploading more when I get a chance).