By Loraine Debnam
“September Song” is a beautiful old tune written in the 1930s and recorded by a variety of artists from Frank Sinatra and Sarah Vaughn to Willie Nelson.
The lyrics of the chorus lament the slow passing of time, both on the calendar and in our lives — “It’s a long, long while from May to December but the days grow short when you reach September.”
In our family, it was definitely not a long, long while. The summer seemed to go by in a blur and the arrival of September brings a multitude of changes and new beginnings. After the celebration of Labour Day on the first Monday, which in itself began to provide workers with a day to campaign for better wages and working conditions, it’s the start of the new academic year. We officially have a “Grade One-r” in the family and a new page has been turned (pardon the pun). This month brings a host of special days, globally, nationally and locally.
The Hajj, is observed by Muslims all over the world. Islamic adults, if they are physically and financially able, are required to make a pilgrimage to the city of Mecca at least once in their lifetime. Hundreds of thousands participate in a number of rituals and ceremonies in their holy city. The Autumn equinox is celebrated by other groups.
On Sept. 22, the line of the Earth’s equator aligns with the centre of the sun and day and night are nearly equal in length. After that, the days become shorter with more hours of darkness here in the northern hemisphere. Not something to look forward to for many like myself who are “solar-powered.”
It’s important to spend some time outside in the sunshine every day, it’s good for our health both physically and mentally.
Nationally, the Terry Fox Marathon of Hope is held every September. Individuals can walk or run, bike or blade to help raise funds for cancer research. The legacy of this Canadian hero, who passed away in 1981, is supported in thousands of communities and schools, as well. Students are encouraged to contribute a “Toonie for Terry” at the fundraising event.
With heroes in mind, we also pay homage to the many who faced the horrendous losses in the U.S. on Sept. 11, 2001.
It is now fifteen years later but it’s another of those dates, which will live in infamy.