It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Labor Day, the day when summer is officially ushered out and autumn is slowly escorted in with the fall equinox and once again the sun will grudgingly give way to the longer nights. As the days become shorter and the weather starts to moderate to a more reasonable climate for a few more weeks until one morning one wakes up to see Jack Frost visited your car windows during the night. The frozen dew on the lawn is still glistening and finally melts in the morning sun: Time for one more game of golf spending as much time outside while we still can.

It’s October and Halloween costumes and decorations suddenly start to appear everywhere. We dig out last year’s door wreath hoping the fall colors are still bright enough to be used one more year. The soccer moms are spending time with their kids being cheerleaders urging them on to play their best and the school football teams sporting their team’s colors are getting ready for Friday nights. Playing fields everywhere are now alive with children wearing every color uniform imaginable.

October changes to November and the time has come to head to the orchards in North Georgia or travel over to Helen or Ellijay to where an Oktoberfest can be found, stocking up on your favorite variety of apples not to mention cider. But there is another American favorite sport which most all we college aficionados like to watch, football. Without fanfare Mother Nature’s harbinger of wintery weather suddenly sneaks in around November. Once again we have the privilege (and it is a privilege not a right) of going to the voting box and casting your vote. Three days later on Veterans Day we somberly lower our banner at all the National Cemeteries. We are reminded of what Ronald Regan wrote: “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream, it must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and children’s children what it was once like in the United States.” Thus the importance and the gravity of even one vote not being cast means.

It’s mid-November now and suddenly, as out of nowhere, we will be inundated with all the “Black Friday” promotions with throngs of people whose only purpose is to take pleasure in running down aisles with those over stuffed shopping carts trying to find that “one needle in the hay stack” that will give a sense of pure enjoyment that all that waiting in those long lines was well worth the wait.

Thanksgiving has arrived and our attention is directed to all those who worked so hard to make America the cornucopia of freedom bought with the sweat and tears of our own brows. It is written, “Thanksgiving has always been a time of people coming together, so thanks is offered from our hearts for that gift of fellowship between us all. Every last Thursday in November we now partake in one of the oldest and most universal of human celebrations. We celebrate the love of life for our fellow human beings.

The last week in the year is the most important week of the whole year. Because it is this recognition of a greater Love, a greater Power where we bow down in humble adoration in that living Spirit we call God. As we look upward into the wintery night sky and experience the beauty of the Heavens and realize that we are a part of that something that makes us all part of that same human race.

Nicholas Harmon is a Walton County resident and a correspondent for The Walton Tribune. Online: nicholasharmoncolumnist.com.

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