I remember being separated from the group on our hike at some point. It was a tiny moment, almost a split-second, where it was just me and the view in all its entirety. September, I thought to myself, how you always start so beautifully. The closer we get to the year’s end, the more reflective we tend to become. There seems to be a global agreement over this. As much as I’d like to argue that time and calendars are a human construct, even without them, even if we just saw the seasons flip to the next like a picture book, we’d still feel the same way. It is only that now, with all our language and vocabulary of time, we get to remark over how September begins like a tiny affair, like the first light from behind the clouds, like the steam from a kettle hissing and popping on a pleasant evening. It is only when we call it something that we can talk about it in earnest. And yet, even if we could not, we would still feel the same things.
But for now, I have the words. I have the words, and I can say to September: I’m glad to meet you again, old friend, and again, we shall sit and wait, for December is far away still. There is still time, and we can make the best of it. It is September. This is where we say, “oh wow, that was a glorious year, but there is a chill in the air now; let us take our jackets out; it may get colder.”
I can say this and so much more. What a luxury it is to have a word for almost everything: to be able to stand on the balcony wearing a jacket, staring at a hazy sky and watching it slowly adorn itself pink, and to mumble, “there is nothing more beautiful than the September sky getting ready for the night.” There is nothing more beautiful, of course, but language gets close. I can say whatever I want to say, as I want to say it.
There is an agreement that it is September, that we all feel the chill in the air. There is an agreement that we must handle our affairs, attenuate the loose ends, and wrap the threads still unrolling for December is near. But it has not arrived just yet. There is still time. There is still time.