Growing up in Michigan the first sign that fall was coming was the chrysanthemums started blooming, then a few leaves started to turn red and MacIntosh apples appeared in the grocery store. Wood smoke from the last summer bonfires drifted on the evening breeze, moms started saying "take your jacket" when you went out after supper, and the street lights came on earlier.
Here in south Georgia there isn't much color. Mostly the end of summer is so hot and dry that the leaves just turn brown and fall off. We also don't have the maples and birches to provide the reds and yellows and orange that you see other places. My first sign of fall is that the ground water becomes cool. Put your shower on the lowest setting and the water isn't tepid anymore. A cold glass of water from the tap? never happen in the summer.
I walked outside at 5:30 am and thought, "yep, fall is starting". The air was crisp and cool, low humidity. We've had some cool mornings before this but as soon as the sun comes up the temperature rises and you know mother nature was just teasing us. But this morning was a real fall day. It's still cool and crisp, even at noon.
This is why we live in Savannah. I often get asked "How can you stand the heat and humidity?" I usually reply that I'm a tropical flower and love it. It's true that the heat and humidity don't really bother me. The truth is that we survive the summer, ignor the winter, and live for the spring and fall. Fifty degrees at night and 80 during the day. Day after day of it. Week after week. Month after month. Oh we'll have more heat and humidity but the tide has turned and fall is here. A time to ride your bike, walk on the beach, sit outside at a cafe watching the world go by. A time to enjoy friends and life. A time to love.