“I miss snow,” my son declared from the backseat.
“Bite your tongue,” I thought to myself as we absorbed the hot summer day. It was only months ago that we were inside our house bunkering down because of the cold weather. Yet, here we were in the next seasonal change, I didn’t want to go there willingly.
Our summer experiences are jogged with the memories of winter in the same place.
My husband and I rode our bikes around Lake Harriet and my mind instantly returned to a January day when we walked as a family across the ice, holding kites and ice fishing rods.
A trip this summer to Gooseberry Falls is compared to our trip over the winter when the falls were frozen and we hiked through the snow-covered trails.
Our picnic in Como Zoo is remembered when we took our skis across the trails.
We run these parallel comparisons of our summer and winter adventures. This is our bittersweet end of summer here in Minnesota where we are enjoying and loving what’s happening now but we are also thinking of winter and that our happiness enjoying our state doesn’t stop because of snow or cold weather.
The Game of Thrones, “winter is coming,” mantra plays well here in Minnesota because we feel this every year when summer comes to such a fast end. Winter is so much closer than we care to believe. We know it’s coming, but we love to stay in complete denial, well, at least I do. Before long, we pack up the sunscreen, beach towels, and shorts. The crisp fall air blows in and with it comes pumpkin spice coffees, squash soup, and apple cocktails. We trade busy weekends for afternoons snuggled on the couch.
It’s bittersweet, isn’t it? Another year of summer is over, another year our kids have grown, another year of memories, and now a new school year, with it new adventures for us as parents. It feels good and hard at the same time. And we know the fall turns to winter, and we sit and dream of these beautiful months that have gone by so very fast.
“It went by too fast.” We lament the end of summer with friends. We squeeze every last drop out of summer here in Minnesota. We hold tight and take one more jump in the lake, one more picnic, one more bike ride, one more beach sunset, and one more boat ride. And some of those lasts of the season we do without realizing it will be the last of the season until the water is too cold or the air too crisp and we missed out on one more time. We hold tight to summer. This is why we are here. We know Minnesota’s little secret. We see her showing off with fabulous summer days on the water and nights by the campfire. It’s bittersweet to say goodbye. Summer is leaving, but there’s always a piece of her that stays in our heart.