On Summer’s End

All good things must come to an end.

-Geoffrey Chaucer

Tonight, I sit on the sea wall at the Grille in my paradise, cold brew in hand. Music floats in the air as people chat and enjoy the Sunday evening that sees a pause in the torrential rains of late. I’m in my favorite green Adirondack chair that rests just underneath the palm tree close to the musician’s stage. If I look up at its leaves, it’s Deja vu. I remember a night in the first month of the year, when the air was a bit chilly, and I sat just here with a cup of coffee, gazing up at the stars in trepidation and excitement, hearing the gentle breaking of the waves. Waiting. That night seems so long ago, and from that night, the end of a long dormant winter, a tumultuous spring followed, leading into summer’s glory. Those months played out, with minor and major scenes, some of excitement, fun, frustration, anticipation, happiness, challenge, success, disappointment, and heartache, as the story that is my life unraveled.

Tonight is the end of another season, my summer. The days that started so optimistic, thrilled to be home for a stretch, living in paradise, quickly dissolved into stress and uncertainty. Teamwork, determination, and resolution, all bound in tireless hours of work, led to incremental steps slowly climbed to the top of a steep mountain, where I can now look out and see the path before me. There lies a tortuous way to the fall and winter’s beginning, but the way seems clearly laid out. There appear to be no more surprises, no more obstacles, just perseverance required to reach the next stage. I can breathe easier, my path at least for this endeavor, unambiguous.

Tonight, the musician plays a song of travel, a return to playing a role, the continuation of rote tasks that are the building blocks to the eventual end of this journey, but not necessarily to fulfillment. He apologizes that though he had assured us there’d be a sunset, we would not see it behind the clouds hiding the horizon. As the bells rings 15 times to signal the end of another day, there is no breathtaking afterglow emerging, just gray becoming grayer as the light fades away.

Tonight, the end of my summer, there is no sunset.

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