Yesterday’s summer temps have settled into more normal fall-like weather, with highs in the 60’s.

Turns out that it is just about perfect for pressing cider.

Our neighbors have done this many times, often inviting others to join in the fun.  This year’s apple cider pressing event has an addition.  A new couple has just moved in up the road.  For 2020, this has become a “welcome to the neighborhood cider pressing party.” 

As we arrive, we are greeted by six canines—three of them Irish Setter half-grown puppies.  They are swirling around in a happy chasing game.  Turns out we’ve just missed two others; there had been eight doggie guests earlier on.  As often happens in our area, get-togethers often include the four-legged friends, too.

Sipping cider, I take my turn in greeting the young couple to our neighborhood.  I notice how we all greet the newcomers:  no handshakes.  No hugs.  It’s kind of a rotating dance:  when one family finishes chatting, the next one slides in.  It’s like there is an unspoken agreement now, a way that we have learned to be social while still respecting the suggested rules. We stay outside.  We maintain more distance when we talk.  We write names on cups so we don’t accidentally share.

That’s my silver lining today:  watching us all adjust to the changes we don’t like and don’t want. 

We still continue to be our own little neighborhood community.  We’re still doing what we always do, offering our support and welcome to two who have just arrived.  We still gather to celebrate fall.  

We’re still here.