Soft rain falls, ceases, then falls again. No rushing beat of downpours yet, but only gentle pattering, and the merest trickling sounds from the rain gutters. The cold air smells fresh, though for a while the damp scent was augmented by the odor of skunk. I am surprised at how quickly it has turned cold. A few days ago there was still sweltering heat, and tonight feels like December. Most remarkable is the quiet. I stand outside and hear, very faintly, the bark of a dog at some great distance, and the dripping of raindrops from the trees, and even the sound of an oak leaf landing on the pavement. A faint ticking comes from the electric meter, and I hear the rush of blood in my own head. Two nights ago, all such sounds were masked by the katydids and crickets. How close the warm nights were, and how vast is the chilled world. It is not the cold alone that makes me shiver.