The scents of autumn

“You know its autumn when…………..”

How many times have you heard this statement, listened to other’s ideas on what autumn means to them, and smiled to yourself in agreement. Often people finish this statement by describing the many different smells associated with autumn, and usually it is a description or a favorite memory of home, of childhood and of warmth. 

Autumn sneaks up on you, depending on where you live. You may be wearing shorts one week and grabbing a jacket or sweater the next. Many claim they can smell it in the air, the changing of the season from summer to autumn. When the leaves start to change color and slowly begin to float to the ground, it is a pretty good hint that autumn is but a sigh away. 

There are many different smells that people associate with autumn. It is a time when school is back in session, and lunch boxes smell of waxed paper, apples and spilt milk. There are also smells of new book bags, back to school shoes and leather coats, warm homemade oatmeal with butter, spices and milk, hot pancakes and warmed maple syrup, and school lunchroom vegetable soup.

Football games begin when the cooler weather arrives, and the smells of hot dogs, popcorn and musky locker rooms fill the air. School carnivals, hometown festivals and county fairs that begin in the autumn months remind us of the sweet smells of cotton candy, candy apples, elephant ear pastries and sausage dogs with peppers and onions. It makes even the healthiest of eaters hungry.

As the temperatures dip, it is time to drag out the wool coats and sweaters that have been hibernating all summer, and with that comes the smells of moth balls. In an effort to keep warm, the smells of the heater when it is first turned on or wood smoke from a fireplace that permeates the air are all smells that are associated with autumn.

The smells of autumn are all around you. Smells from a pumpkin patch, dried leaves, pine cones and bales of hay mingle together to remind your of the changing of the season. Mulled cider, hot chocolate, roasted marshmallows and the smell of bonfires warm you. A bounty of apples, squash, sweet potatoes, big pots of chili and homemade soups tempt your taste buds.

As the season progresses and Thanksgiving approaches, the smells of pumpkin and apple pie, turkey and dressing and a mingling of spices fill the air. It is a time for giving thanks, for life, for family and friends, and that you are fortunate enough to enjoy yet another autumn, and all the wonderful smells associated with it.