The Wistful Weekend

Strange, maybe it’s come on with age, but it seems the time to start mourning the summer came early this year, brought on as it usually is by a cold front and a shift in the wind from the southwest to the northeast.

Then again, the old days, when summer ended in a parade of Volvos laden with bicycles and teary children on Labor Day, are long gone, replaced by a new end of summer — the middle of August. It seems the classic definition of school vacation no longer is true. Colleges get started before September, most public schools, especially those in the south start in mid-August,   never close their doors.

What has brought on this early termination of summer? I have heard the theory that standardized testing, and the impact it has on teacher salaries and job security makes it compelling for educators to get kids back in school before the lessons of the previous year have faded. Sounds specious to me.

Anyway, as a townie in a vacation land, the good side is the place clears out a little, and left turns become possible again. The downside is sad faces and the unmistakable feeling that the days are growing shorting, the flower garden looking a little tattered, and the pungency of a New England autumn is a little more than a month away.