Archive for Thursday, September 3, 2009

September bliss

September 3, 2009

In most ways, September is my favorite month of the year. Yet, the month can also bring on feelings of melancholy.

September is one of four months with just 30 days in the Gregorian calendar. While it is now the ninth month of the year, it was once the seventh. The name “September” comes from the Latin for “septum” or seventh. A change in the Roman calendar in 153 B.C. moved September from being seventh to the ninth month of the year.

September has been a month with plenty of tragedies. We are all aware of the horror of Sept. 11, 2001, when terrorists attacked the United States, but sadly that isn’t the only horror to have taken place in September.

In September 1666, the Great Fire of London destroyed much of the city. In 1901, President William McKinley was assassinated. He was shot on Sept. 6, 1901, and died on Sept. 14. There have been a variety of other lesser known tragedies during the month. On the other hand, Christopher Columbus started his second voyage to the New World on Sept. 25, 1494.

The month starts with Labor Day and also includes an unofficial holiday — Grandparents Day — on the first Sunday of the month. Probably the most unique holiday is one observed in India where they observe “Teachers Day” on Sept. 5. The holiday honors educators for their contribution to the Indian society.

So what do I really like about September? No doubt, the most important event in my life in September was the birth of our first daughter on Sept. 7. I will never forget the awesome feeling of holding my child for the first time. And, yes, I will always remember the scary feeling of wondering if I really was smart enough to be a “daddy.”

As a child, I always looked forward to September because of the start of school. It wasn’t because of my youthful desire to gain knowledge, it was because of the social events and sports that got under way in September.

Being a sports fan, I really love September, which features a tremendous variety of events. When I was young, in high school and college, it was a time of nervous anticipation during early football practices. I existed with the hope that I would be a starter or, at least, get to play. Playing in my first high school game and starting my first game in college are memories that will always make September important.

Now, I still love September because it is the start of football season. I can’t wait until the first high school game or the Chiefs’ opener. I enjoy watching my grandsons’ youth league games and for me, September weekends are filled with football played at a variety of levels.

I love the changing of the seasons. September weather can be fickle and range from the 90s to the 40s, yet there are many, many warm days with pleasant fall sunshine.

Probably September has the best weather of the entire year. It always means that Jean and I are busy in the yard, planting bulbs and grass seed as we plan for next spring.

There are excellent local festivals and events during the month, too. Two of my favorites are Edwardsville AutumnFest and the Applefest at the Grinter House.

Sometimes September brings just a few melancholy feelings. An occasional cool day always reminds me that winter with all of its cold and unpleasant weather is just around the corner. The end of September means that another year is racing to its conclusion.

Yet, I don’t let that bother me because I really can’t feel melancholy when I’m looking at a flower bed, which is filled with beautiful brightly colored mums. About then I’m reminded of the upcoming weekend schedule of football games, which adds excitement to my life. September is a great month and I’m planning to enjoy every minute of it.

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