Even though the official start date for the fall season is September 21st, Labour Day is a big day of transitions. It is most often associated with the beginning of the school year, especially most Universities and Colleges. It also the last major weekend of the summer holidays, so tourism tends to trail off. And in some years, like this one, it lands close to the first of the month, which means a lot of people are moving.
I happen to live in a vacation rental condo complex where all of these events collapse into one. All the tourists flood the building on Thursday-Saturday, making one last ditch effort to taste the warm weather, before departing on the Sunday to give themselves the Monday to prepare for the week.
On the 1st, the moving vans started to pile up on the streets as people moved into the building – most of them renters for the winter season, but some of them new owners. The majority of these new residents are students, since the complex is relatively close to the College campus here, and convenient to the bus routes to get to the University campus.
Watching one mother help her daughter move into the building took me back to my first days of University when I first moved away from home. There is an aura of excitement in the air as people get ready for the school year – new computers, setting up desks and living spaces, meeting new friends for the first time, buying stacks of textbooks and waiting hours in line in the University bookstore with the other hundred students talking about how broken the system is. 1
The leaves slowly start to change, and in the far north, the snows have already started to settle into the mountains. The Pacific salmon run is just finishing up, and the Kokanee salmon run will be beginning in the coming weeks. Baseball seasons start to finish up, as hockey seasons begin. And people go from having glasses of wine on the patios of restaurants, to warm cups of tea or coffee in their local cafes.
Last year at this time, I had moved into my new place. The first week of September was a month of exploration, discovering which coffee shops were best, how far it took to walk to the grocery store, and spending time at the beach soaking up the last hot rays of sunlight for the summer.
This time, another switch is happening. I have found myself more energized to do my work, and wanting to explore other avenues for work. I have been pushing myself harder with exercise this summer, but want to push even harder this fall and see where it takes me by next spring. Most people switch their diets around in the springtime to clean it up for the summer. I want to do the same right now and further improve my discipline away from having cheat meals.
My focus in the past has always been on others, and the past two and a half years on my daughter. Now is time for a switch, to put a little more emphasis on me.
- Maybe this is unique to the University of Regina, but when I went to school, you couldn’t order textbooks online (the web was only just getting underway), couldn’t even order by phone and have them set aside. All of the textbooks were never placed out in advance, either. Everyone was buying them the first week of classes, which meant for huge lineups running down the length of the store. Ironically, the bookstore used to be the location for the cafeteria when the University first started, so it was a space meant for lineups and waiting around. ↩