Don’t let fall pass you by

October/November 2022

By Ali Wisch Fabre

It is hard to beat fall in New England. Changes that affect all your senses happen quickly but subtly. You may not even notice until they’ve already passed. The deep oranges and reds that seeped out of summer sunsets are now seeping out of the leaves in your backyard like little sirens, alerting you winter is coming. The smoke from your BBQ is now coming from your woodburning stove – familiar but different.

Your sailing gloves are getting stowed below, and your winter mittens are sitting by the front door or by your companionway, next to your scarf and hat. You hear the wind against your windows or shrinkwrap rather than through your sails. You feel it in your fingertips, not just blowing through your hair. (Hopefully, you’re wearing that hat.) And you drink hot coffee more often than iced (unless you’re from Boston).

As fall arrives, you must make a choice in New England. To hibernate or to migrate, there is no in-between. It’s a chance to choose your adventure every year. What a blessing. Maybe you’re looking to get away, or as Jack Farrell talks about in “Island Dispatch,” you’re just “In search of a little salvation,” page 46.

In the past, I’ve mentioned that I believe boaters only have two seasons – winter and summer. But I was wrong. While you may not be out on your boat this fall, that doesn’t mean you can’t be. If you decide to go for it, you can find helpful safety tips on page 23. Or get some advice from the grandpas out there. They are full of wisdom, as Dave Roper illustrates in this month’s “Perspectives,” page 12. And if you’ve already hauled out, there is no shortage of things to keep boaters busy during the fall.

Maybe you made it to a boat show or two. If you found yourself at the Newport show, you may have walked by the Points East booth! And, if not Newport, Annapolis is always a great gathering of sailors and boaters and an excellent opportunity to meet up with friends old and new. If you’ve already chosen to migrate this season and left early, maybe you made it to IBEX in Florida, an experience like no other.

September is also full of races and regattas, a fantastic way to wrap things up. Hopefully, you could take in the beauty and fun this fall had to offer (maybe even from the top of a lighthouse), and it didn’t sneak past you like it has me so many times.