While I was in Colorado for my niece Julie’s wedding, the sky at home seems to have shifted. Not in the planet realigning sort of way that’s inherent with life-changing events, but more in an axle-spinning reminder of the earth’s rotation and the changing of the seasons.
Up until the week I left, I could see the first indications, however vague, of a sun preparing to rise when I’d start my morning runs. I propped sunglasses on my head; by the time I reached the front porch, I was as likely as not to need them to block those first sleepy rays.
But when I set out September 2, the morning after returning home, the sky was still starry. I saw no pink swaths, no semblance of shadows — only a ceiling of white pinpricks. When I finished running, the sun still wasn’t visible. I’d been in the house for 10 minutes before I remembered to take the sunglasses on my head.
Autumn isn’t here, not by a long shot. Temperatures are in the 80s when I wake up; the heat index surpasses100 during the day. The State Fair of Texas hasn’t even started, and I’ve long held that fall won’t arrive till after the last teddy bear has been won and the midway closes.
Yet yet yet…there is something in the air that reminds us, however subtly, of the inevitable passage of time.
So for starry mornings that seem somehow to hold the heat at bay, all the while still making me sweat…as well as for life’s sky-shifting, planet-realigning milestones…The Grateful Runner says thank you.