In the Fall of My Life
Fall has always been my favorite time of year. I liked school growing up and looked forward to starting a new year every September. I was never one for hot, humid weather and enjoyed the pleasant warmth and cool evenings that autumn brought. And, of course, fall brought sports back into focus. I played little league and American Legion baseball during the summer, but the real action began when schools began competing. I played three sports in high school, one for each season. Although football was not my strongest sport, I always enjoyed the spirit and pageantry of high school football.
In addition to the change in weather, autumn brings a change in the landscape as well. The turning of leaves to bright hues never gets tiring. Some years are better than others (this year seems especially good) and the spectacle only lasts a little while but I look forward to it every year. Although fall is a busy time for my sports photography, I try to carve out a little time for a color road trip and maybe a hike or two to enjoy nature's canvas.
Fall is also the gateway to the holiday season. From Halloween through Thanksgiving and into Christmas (technically not fall) activities are plenty. Although November ushers in less enjoyable weather and landscapes, it also contains two of my favorites events. Thanksgiving has always been a time for family to congregate and I look forward to getting together each year for that. November is also the time I see another "family" of mine. Those who know me are aware that I am a big fan of high school volleyball. In fact, volleyball gave me my start in sports photography.
This year I will attend the state volleyball finals for the 22nd consecutive year. There is a group of us who have gotten to know each other over the years by our attendance and seating in the same section and we make an annual event out of it. We share our love of the sport (and candy that we sneak in) every year. We start corresponding in mid October, speculating who we might see in Battle Creek over the three days of the finals. We see four matches on each of the three days including semi-finals and finals, covering all four divisions of schools for a total of twelve matches over the long weekend (Thursday through Saturday). We come from all over the state from Petoskey to Cedar Springs to Kalamazoo. There are about a dozen of us who make the trip each year and northern Michigan is well represented with four of us from north of Cadillac. It is always great to cheer on our favorite local teams.
So, although each season has something to offer, autumn is and probably always will be my favorite.