the luckiest.

When I last left off, I was homeward bound.  Now I’m back, and wishing that weekends were longer.  Despite the brevity of my trip, I was able to accomplish everything on my list.  The time with family and friends was wonderful.  Our adventures allowed me to enjoy two beautiful lakes and the rolling hills in between.  I fell asleep to the sound of waves.  I unknowingly planned my trip perfectly to coincide with a wine festival.  I returned to Pennsylvania exhausted…and thankful. 

Coming back from this weekend is a reminder to me that summer is almost over.  Of course, summer has different connotations once you have entered the year-round, full-time work world.  My summer wasn’t comprised of days at the beach or by the pool, of mornings without the summons of an alarm clock or of far-flung travels and exploration.  Instead, my summer looked quite similar to winter and spring, aside from a bit more sunshine.  One sign of summer’s end has remained: now I’m getting ready to “go back to school”.  Despite the fact that I never actually left my school, I’ll be starting up classes again.  I’m excited for classes to start (yes, I realize I sound a bit nerdy here) and to be reunited with my cohort-mates.  I hope that some motivation and diligence with accompany this excitement, or else I am going to be in trouble.

I’m getting ready to say, “so long, sweet summer”.  The evenings have become cooler.  Daylight is dwindling.  Summer will gracefully give way to autumn and all of the wonderful things that comprise it.  Vibrant, crisp leaves, perfect for shuffling through and jumping in.  Cradling a mug of warm cider.  Late nights around a bonfire.  Being wrapped up in cozy sweaters.  Football.  Needless to say, fall is a fantastic season.  While I enjoy the particularities of each passing season, I think if I were to conduct a conscientious ranking, autumn would take the top spot.  Although we’re still in the heat of August, I know the summer nights will soon give way to autumn splendor.

Our lives are continuous cycles of endings and beginnings.  With each end comes the opportunity for something new.  I’ve always enjoyed the fact that the academic ceremony celebrating graduation is referred to as commencement.  By definition, it is not the end; instead, it is a beginning, a point from which to move forward.  As the earth begins to show signs of the passing of seasons, of ending and beginning, I anticipate the promise and hope which each new season brings as it commences. 

…every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.  Are you ready for it?  What is ending?  What needs to end?  What needs to begin?  I can think of many things that I should end, or at least minimize, and many that I should begin, revive or increase.  Maybe all this thinking about change and the resultant hope and opportunity will prompt me to finally act upon such changes.  It’s time for me to commence, to move forward cognizant of my past, aware of my present and hopeful for the future.

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