It was just above freezing when I got into the car Tuesday morning. The rising sun had just barely cleared my neighbor's roof, and did its best to melt the frost off of my roof and windshield.
Anne and I sat in the passenger compartment shivering, surprisingly thick clouds of fog blooming in front of us with every breath, while we waited for the engine to warm up.
"We should have started the car five minutes ago and waited in the house," I said, hugging myself to keep warm.
"When we build the time machine, we'll make sure we do that."
After a couple of minutes, the frost on the windshield began to soften, helped along by judicious use of the wipers. As we drove up the street, I noticed that every house, lawn, car -- hell, every surface -- that was still in shadow had at least some frost on it. I'm sure people who live in parts of the world that actually have seasons wouldn't be moved by it, but it made me happy to observe some tactile evidence of winter's impending, full-throated arrival.
About fifty traffic-filled minutes later, Anne dropped me off at the airport. Four flight-delayed hours after that, I walked into the Seattle airport, and five hours after that I walked into the Child's Play Charity Auction.
Seventeen hours after that, I walked out of my hotel into a crystal-clear thirteen degree Seattle morning that shocked me so much, I didn't actually feel how cold it was until I'd been sitting in my cab for almost a full minute.
Finally, about thirty-two hours after I'd walked out of my house I walked back inside. My pets greeted me at the door, and made me feel like I’d been missing for a week.