(I wrote this a couple weeks ago)
These past days I have been feeling restless again. Something about the morning sun, reaching long and low across my front porch. Summer is ending, no doubt. The forest smells different. The high gold grass in the meadow looks tired, ready to lay in wait for new green growth. Wind now stirs the very tops of the pines, a nudge from the next season to come. Hinting that I’d better hurry up and get wherever the hell I’m going.
Maybe it’s a primeval migratory thing. Time to get on, in body and mind. I feel as tied to the changing weather as the deer moving through my yard to lower elevations, the geese who overnight on the pond across the ravine – a pit stop on their flyway to warmer wintering grounds. I feel it in my limbs, my chest. I need to find my spotted pony (I’m SURE I have a spotted pony somewhere) and calmly, quietly ride over yon hill. Goodbye. Simple as that.
Or… roadtrips! The next best thing to actually leaving is sort of leaving. Always in the fall. Migration made real! It scratches the itch. The urge to scram manifesting in explorations of empty western states. Looking for what, I wonder? It just feels good to keep moving.
September has always been my time of transition. It’s my birth month (Libra with Sagittarius rising and Aries moon if you must know) – a highly anticipated handover of years when younger, more recently regarded with apprehension. Am I still making headway here, progressing in the very best sense of the word, or am I just getting old?
Yeah. All the major shifts in my life have happened at this time of year. My family moved from the beach to the mountains in September – a huge difference from mall-sprawl to wild forest, with no sidewalks or visible neighbors. Our new setting gave no choice but to adapt with the seasons. The onset of winter made you change to survive, forcing a response with appropriate actions: thawing the frozen well-pump on frosty mornings to get water flowing; felling trees and splitting firewood to warm the house; a flashlight on darkening mornings for the walk to the school bus stop. No, it wasn’t homesteading in the 1880s, just Nevada County in the 1970s.
And once we had to melt snow in pans on the woodstove to get fresh water…
Oh now. Listen to me, getting all nostalgic over my Laura Ingalls childhood. More on that some other time. Anyway:
I first stood on foreign soil (upon the murky, messy, monumental culture shock that is India) in the fall. I was sixteen. I moved to England the week after I turned eighteen – a decamping that lasted eleven years. I started my fancy-schmancy, career-making, panic-inducing, incredible London design job in the fall. Divorce papers from my first husband finally came through on my birthday in 1996. I married again on a beautiful bright autumn day, four years later. Each time a grand difference, a shift, a terrifying new beginning.
Wow. I’m starting to freak myself out here. September for me is obviously MOVE-IT-MONTH. It’s the adjustment period. Re-make/Re-model. No wonder I feel antsy.
Speaking of birth signs, which I’m sure you were hoping I wouldn’t – but indulge me, it’s my birthday – here’s what it says about my rising sign; which is supposedly as important, if not more so, than the sun sign: I am active and somewhat restless. I want my world filled with adventure and change. I tend to become fidgety if I feel confined. I always seem to be looking for something that is just out of grasp and may do this my entire life.
Is this a relief? A release? I can’t help this! This is as instinctive to me as the deer, the goose, the watery whale, the wildebeest and the determined little Monarch. On their paths because they have no choice. Crossing rivers or being eaten by crocodiles in the attempt to just get where they’re going. I suppose we are all on our paths because we have no choice.
Hey – the plural of wildebeest is wildebai.
Well. Change is afoot. Seems to be happening, again, to me, to my life. But change is good. Change is good, right?
I think I’m about to be eaten by crocodiles.