Fall is the most wistful season and fall walks are the most wistful walks. In movies, there are always montages of people walking through parks or past their old highschool, thinking about childhood or reminiscing about old loves during fall. If spring is the season of new life then fall is definitely about the past.
In fall, everything is golden which is how the past mostly tends to look. Everybody knows about the good ol’ days. That’s probably why the movie montages usually show kids in varsity jackets throwing a football around, or young people sitting on picnic tables and laughing, and couples kissing in piles of leaves.
Fall belongs to small towns like the one you probably grew up in and to bustling cities like New York. It is the season where we wear long coats and put our hands in our pockets, stepping over puddles on the way to the coffee shop. It’s the season for coming together. We tell stories about the things that happened to us and the things that didn’t. We remember and we try to forget.
Summer is about making new friends and so fall is about cherishing the old. We huddle in cozy spaces and make recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation. We listen to songs we had forgotten and re-watch old movies. The familiar is comforting, even welcoming. Maybe we find ourselves clinging to it in the same ways leaves cling to the branches of trees.
When I walked through the park, my hands in the pockets of my long coat, I saw a dad playing soccer with his little boys, and couples walking their dog, and a few people trying to get some final rounds of tennis in before the season ends for good. Then I walked past café windows and saw people crammed into warm spaces. It felt like a movie montage – separate scenes and separate stories coming together for something special. I didn’t feel happy but I didn’t feel sad. Instead, I felt something wistful and full of longing, something that reminded me undeniably about the past.