It’s that time of year again when school zone lights are flashing and motorists find themselves waiting for busloads of children to load and unload. When school lets out in the late spring, it’s hard to imagine how quickly this time of year will roll around again. But it always does.
A new crop of graduates heads off to college and everyone else gets a little bit older, too.
Parents can’t believe another year has passed, while school officials scramble to accommodate students enrolled at the last minute. Our military community ensures that there will always be empty seats and new students to fill them.
Fall sports practice schedules swing into gear and football stadiums will be lighting up on Friday nights.
And, at roughly the same time, the number of tourists visiting the Emerald Coast starts to dwindle. Locals can actually get to and from Destin on Saturdays, something that is almost impossible during the height of the tourist season. That works out well for local employers who rely heavily on high school and college students for staffing.
The Emerald Coast doesn’t have the same seasonal shifts, weather-wise, that you’ll see in northern climates. But we certainly look different in July than we do in October, January or March. The beaches plump up with tourists in the summer, empty out in the fall, fill with snowbirds in the winter and brace themselves for college students in the spring. Traffic swells and slows accordingly.
And so we move into the fall months.
If they pass as quickly as the summer did, the next time I look up from my computer it will be Thanksgiving. And then Christmas will be upon us.
When you are young and you picture yourself “old,” you don’t look any different. You have just filled in the blanks with all of the things you want to do when you grow up.
But by the time you get to my age, you know how quickly the years pass. You understand — at least conceptually — that the rest of your life is a million moments strung loosely together, and that you can’t outrun time.
So if the summer slipped away from you, grab on to the fall. Be present. Savor the empty roadways, the quiet beaches, the metal bleachers at Friday night games.
Do something each day worth doing. And pause for moment to appreciate it.
Daily News Managing Editor Wendy Victora can be reached at 315-4478 or firstname.lastname@example.org