Here comes September. A weird month it is, neither here nor there. Summer has officially departed yet her humid heat lingers on. The cool breeze in the mornings and evenings signals the ushering of autumn, well almost. It’s festive yet not festive enough. It’s sometimes hot, sometimes pleasant, sometimes both, it’s confusing. That’s how September is in most parts of India.
The ninth month in the English (Gregorian) calendar, September gets its name from the Latin word septem or seven. It was originally the seventh of ten months in the oldest known Roman calendar, the calendar of Romulus. January and February were added to the beginning of the year after the calendar reform. Though, September now comes ninth the name was retained.
As per the Hindu calendar, September commences mid Bhadra and ends mid Asvina. The month of Bhadra marks the beginning of Sharad Ritu, the season of festivities. But it’s just the beginning. Though festivities may have begun with Janmashtami and Ganesh Chaturthi, the mood is yet to set in. Often hot and sometimes pleasant September may have something to do with that.
Unlike the English calendar that’s divided into four seasons (summer, autumn, winter, and spring), as per the Hindu calendar, we have six seasons. Grishma or summer, Varsha or monsoon, Sharad or autumn, Hemant or fall and Shita or winter. The six seasons I feel capture the moods of the changing weather better than the straight jacket English seasons.
September comes in the early days of Sharad Ritu or Indian autumn. It’s still hot yet the harshness of the summer has waned. The pleasant morning breeze holds the promise of cooler days to come. We wait eagerly for the festive October to light up our dull days.
September is the crossroad where summer meets autumn as they make room for fall and winter. It’s the month when the mundane meets the festive and awaits the excitement to come. Though it falls in the middle of the year, September to me is the month of hope, of new beginnings!