|A favorite old photograph of mine of a boy's cross country team|
delightedly posing for the camera, sporting boutonnières
Autumn is my favorite season. Although I am long past my schoolboy days, I am still drawn to the rhythm of the school calendar, more so than the Gregorian calendar that we use to mark the passing of days, weeks, and months. Even though that calendar may say that the new year begins on January 1st, the day after Labor Day is more of a psychological new year's beginning for me. That's when the new school year starts, and clothes are bought or taken out to wear again. There is the sense that I have another opportunity to make something of myself, that I have another chance to succeed in what I put my mind to.
Coincidentally, Autumn is also the season here in the Hudson River Valley when the weather is at its most lyrically beautiful. It is still summery and warm through much of September, and the skies are often cloudless and brilliantly cerulean blue, days on end. There is little more beautiful to me than when the trees start to turn and then become ablaze with yellow, orange, and red leaves, and the fields become golden. With the nights becoming refreshingly cool again it is perfect porch sleeping weather at Darlington House, one of the great joys of life, I believe.
As with so many new beginnings, though, there is work to be done. And so I am back to RD again, after a lazy hiatus these past two months. I had a busy June and July at the office which culminated in a lovely August largely devoted to spending time by the shore and then kicking back when I wasn't. It was delightfully pleasant.
During the final weeks leading up to Labor Day the streets in midtown Manhattan are sparsely peopled during the day, with only a few tourists and office workers straggling about. And it is a virtual ghost town on the UES where we live, as most of its inhabitants are either away for the summer or locked within their air conditioned apartments. Fortunately for those of us who found ourselves in the city then, as I happily did this year, the restaurants were empty and thrilled to take walk-ins, there was no traffic to speak of, and the streets were full of empty taxis roaming for fares. I love being in New York when everyone else is out of town.
The minute that Labor Day weekend is over, though, it is as if the starting gun has gone off at Saratoga, and, like clockwork, the city immediately becomes clogged again with throngs of people rushing about the sidewalks, traffic becomes unbearable, the restaurants are jammed to the rafters, and finding a free cab during rush hour is a fruitless exercise indeed.
Back to school. Back to work. Back to life. Back to RD.
Here are some of the essays that I am working on that you can expect to see here in the coming weeks:
- New installments of Reggie's Rules
- A Pompey post or two
- An interview with a lovely lady who shares her mutual passion for collecting ceramics with me, which will first appear in New York Social Diary before running here
- The return of the Saucer of the Week essay
- A piece in which I explain how "Saint Grottlesex Made Me Who I Am Today"
- An essay about windsor chairs, and how they are a more versatile seating form than many give them credit for
- Musings about the distinctions between what it means to launder versus wash linens and clothes
- The joys of a well-ordered linen closet
- Some new additions to our collections at Darlington House, and
- Attending the Colonial Revival show at the Museum of the City of New York
I appreciate your patience (and thoughtful emails), Dear Reader, during my absence, and I look forward to picking this up again.