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By Dennis Carlson
Well, the death of summer is upon us. The trees have brought bouquets of color to mourn its passing. The colors will fade until they turn brown and fall to the ground to mark the season’s gravesite.
Soon their branches will be bare, stretching up to the sky, beseeching it for just one more bright, warm day.
And then the bitter cold of winter will grip them and in a last desperate bid for warmth they will fling broken sticks at the house, and in a final betrayal they will be brought in, only to perish in the fireplace.
It’s after the colors fade that my seasonal depression sinks in for a four-month stay. I start listening to Christmas music at the first hint of cold to muster some joy and keep my mind off of the fact that it will now be dark not just when I leave for work, but when I leave work for home. I can keep myself going until about mid-February when I finally hit bottom and spend most of my time hoping for motorcycle weather.
This year may be even harder. My Dad is marking time in a nursing home with one health issue after another and watching his memories fade as each day goes by. I lost my best friend in August in a motorcycle accident. And for some damn reason I can’t stop thinking about a baby swan we saw get drowned and eaten by a turtle at a park in Bolivar.
But this summer I have had reunions with family and friends that I served with overseas that I hadn’t seen since the eighties. Laughing and reliving a lightning round of “Remember when you …” and “Oh, I’d almost forgotten that.” I got to introduce the Lovely and Talented Mrs. C to my friends and see her fall in love with them before we left.
We will spend Veteran’s Day with another buddy and his wife, for a concert and more than a few games of dominoes. If all goes well later we will get to bring a pleasant surprise to a friend down south.
But after that I’m at a loss. I guess I’ll finish painting the bedroom and wait for spring. If you should happen to swing by the Casa de Chaos I will be the one standing in the open garage next to the Harley and staring at the sky.
Dennis Carlson, a radio technician for the railroad, lives in Holt and serves as a volunteer fireman/paramedic.