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Greek-American Stories: Bye, Bye Summer

Today, as I write, it is August 31, which tells us that autumn is almost here. Amen! I welcome September and October as a reprieve from the blazing sun, pollen, sweat, and that exhaustion that only summer brings. Although I’m a Leo, summer ain’t my favorite season. Maybe I liked it when I was a kid. School’s out, beach days, family picnics in Van Cortland Park, trips to Central Park, visiting the zoo, and some weekend visits to relatives in the New Jersey suburbs where the backyard was a huge playground and I’d be with my cousins.

But, that’s a long, long time ago, just after the ice age. Maybe, I didn’t feel the oppressive heat then as I do now. Kids usually are more resilient. To me fall is a second spring. In August the garden is at its glorious best like it knows the play is over and it’s time for the final bow. The veggies are almost picked. And, soon, September glides into October – the trees will be brilliant with color, ablaze with orange, rust, and various reds and gold – like an oil painting. And, the green will still be around, too.  We should all welcome September and October because of the coming holidays, and maybe trips to a nearby farm where we can pick a pumpkin, various squashes, and apples straight from the trees. And then we can take long walks through paths along streams of rushing, crystal cool waters. Try that in the summer when mites, mosquitoes, wasps, and their relatives fly around, waiting for your arm or leg.

In Autumn, at the end of a walk, I’m not sweaty, and I feel no exhaustion, either. And, those pesky bugs are looking for a place to hibernate. Best of all, after dinner, a special quiet settles throughout the house. We turn on the TV and watch the news, wondering what happened in the world while we were meandering through cozy farmland. Oh! Wow! Fires, robberies, wars, floods, murders, car crashes, tornadoes – houses collapsing. What’s this – a senator was accused of fraud and drug possession? Gee! I wonder if I voted for him. Well, I’ll just settle back and take another slice of that delicious apple pie made from those farm apples I picked. Six in one pie.

While I was strolling through the farm lanes, I was thinking: “wouldn’t it be wonderful if there were more farms and country lanes?” I know that America was a pristine, gloriously green paradise before those land grabbing, religious opportunists set foot on Plymouth Rock. A few more days and we will all enjoy evenings with a special silence, without the noisy air conditioner or the grinding motors of landscapers beheading the grass and blowing away debris early mornings. There are art shows, music festivals, and film festivals in nearby neighborhoods. I like visiting vintage shops or browsing garage sales. Why pay big bucks to stay at luxury hotels when, if you really want a getaway, the back yard is cozier. So is breakfast on the patio.

I’m a book lover and search out book sales in certain towns and libraries – a great way to spend a really freezy below 50-degree day dressed in warm sweaters and jackets. There are advertised walking tours, too, that serve hot coffee at the finishing line. Why not grab your lawn chair and leave that phone at home. It’s called a nano-getaway. At night, try lying on a comfy blanket and look up at the stars – maybe pitch a tent to ward off a nosy deer or raccoon. I like to play my CDs, sit in the back patio and play Greek or Latin music. Evenings are still have a little light yet, but we get another chance after calling it a day. It’s called tomorrow.



It is said that to end a war, the warring parties must first exhaust themselves.

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Deck the White House Halls: Jill Biden Wants Holiday Visitors to Feel Like Kids Again (Vid & Pics)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Step inside the White House during the holidays by walking beneath the branches of a Christmas tree.

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Greek Film Festival (LAGFF) hosts an in-person screening of Greece’s Oscar entries which compete for nominations in December - Asimina Proedrou’s top Iris Award-winner ‘Behind the Haystacks’ (Πίσω από τις Θημωνιές) and Thanasis Neofotistos’ multiple-award-winning short film ‘Air Hostess – 737’ - on Sunday, December 10, 5:30 PM, at the Gianopulos Family Theater at St.

LOS ANGELES – The Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral community is calling for cookies for the reception following the 24th Annual Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 3.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Step inside the White House during the holidays by walking beneath the branches of a Christmas tree.

UTTARKASHI, India (AP) — All 41 construction workers who were trapped in a collapsed mountain tunnel in northern India for more than two weeks were pulled out on Tuesday, bringing an end to a drawn-out rescue mission that had grabbed the country's attention for days.

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