There’s really nothing like early autumn in Sacramento. Finally, respite from the triple-digit temperatures. You feel your lungs expand tentatively as you run over to the river, and then a surprised alveolic spasm of joy as they realize there’s no smoke.
Autumn in Curtis Park, however, is really the apotheosis. The tree tunnels down Fifth Avenue and Portola Way are colossal cascades of auburn, vermilion, umber and all the rest of those obscure rusty shades in the Crayola box. The light at sunset is just different – thicker, somehow, as if it’s trying to tell you that you really need to get the most out of it before the haze and damp of winter bring the gray.
Biking home from a show at the The Side Door on Franklin Boulevard, you might roll by a friend who has attracted neighbors with a new front patio fire table. Maybe you pull up a chair, and all of a sudden an hour has gone by in conversation, laughter and a sense of conspiracy: How are we, as supposedly responsible adults, getting away with doing this on a Thursday night?
The mornings have become a mite crisp, which somehow makes even a decaf coffee give you a little energetic jolt to start your day. The DMV strollers are in sweatshirts now, but the snatches of conversation you pick up are just as intriguing as during the summer: “… and then it went back under the porch …” “four times as heavy as I thought…” “… can’t tell him that!”
You debate taking screens out of your windows, but realize there are definitely a couple 90-degree days yet to come; that whole-house fan will still get some use before the end of the year.
It’s squirrel heaven, as they take a single bite of each ripe pecan and throw it down from the high limbs, chittering heartily as each one bounces off the roof, a nutty dagger with your bare foot’s name on it. If it were possible for rodents to scoff, they’d be doing it. Your research into “pest removal” bears no fruit, and you give up on the fantasy of pecan pie for yet another year.
You despair that there’s not a single work holiday in October, and realize that Halloween is what you’ve got. Remembering how generous Curtis Park is with its candy, you make an advance appointment with your kid’s dentist.
This is a wonderful time to be a resident of Curtis Park. Thanks for being here.