My favorite thing about October is everything. Seriously. It’s a visually stunning month full of crisp mornings and hot ciders and dirty, smooth-skinned pumpkins and bumpy, unattractive gourds, high-energy sports games under the dark sky and bright lights and – most importantly to me – colorful, vivid memories of growing up.
My memory is a weird thing. Just last night at dinner, I was sitting across the table from Rob at this dope Mexican restaurant, sipping on an apple cider margarita as I listened to him talk about the future. At one point, he looked up at me and said something along the lines of, “Have we not talked about this?” Ooooooh yeah. My bad. We definitely did.
I’m the absolute worst when it comes to remembering words and conversations. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve started a story, recognized the look of familiarity on someone’s face and said, “Have I told you this already?” and received an eye roll in return, I could retire at 25. But my visual memory is steadfast. I remember exactly what I was wearing. I remember the look on someone’s face or a crooked smile of laugh. I remember how my food and drink looked before I could ever remember how it tasted. My memory is almost entirely visual.
And my October memories are the most beautiful ones. I remember sharing my birthday celebrations with my brother and great-grandmother, simultaneously blowing out the candles on cakes she made. I remember my 13th birthday party, where I received a 14th birthday card from one of my oldest friends. I remember Homecoming dances – the black dress, the red dress, the teal dress, the other red dress, the navy dress and the purple dress. I remember Homecoming football games: the speckles of black and purple athletes that scurried across the field, cupping hot cider in between my hands to stay warm, and the prickling of my skin as my friend smeared cold purple paint across my stomach. In my college years, Homecoming meant tailgating with my dad and his friends while decked out in blue and gold from head to toe. I remember jumping into the crunchiest pile of leaves next to the tree that once held a wooden swing on the farm. I remember the whipping wind next to the water in Erie on our very first wine tour as a group. I remember my grandmother ordering another round of shot pitchers for my 21st birthday at a local dive bar and my mom just shook her head and laughed. I remember scoring a goal against our rival in the pouring rain. I even remember the best hair day I’ve ever had.
So, it’s hard not be a basic white girl on the first day of October and shout from the rooftops how glad I am to live in a world where there are Octobers. I woke up today genuinely happy. I wanted so badly to share my joy with my coworkers that I brought a dozen doughy donuts with too-sweet icing and fall-colored sprinkles into the office just to celebrate the arrival of my favorite time of year. To me, this month means spending quality time with my friends and family, creating new memories and reminiscing over old ones. I’ll never get tired of October. Anne of Green Gables really had it right.