Snowflakes are one of nature’s most fragile things, but look what they do when they stick together. Tens . . .

Snowflakes are one of nature’s most fragile things, but look what they do when they stick together.

Tens . . .

The late night television talkfests are into top tenning their audiences.

It’s our turn. The top 10 signs Yukoner’s know summer’s on a downhill run, and big white is on the way.

10) The territorial flower, our ubiquitous fireweed, enters the seed stage waiting for fall winds, just like voters waiting for the fall political winds to blow away the seeds of doubt.

9) The tops of the mountains are capped white. As it creeps slowly down, day by day, election speculation emulates its progress.

8) Yukon floatplanes fly hither and yon from dawn to dusk, the pilots surely the luckiest people in Yukon, with a spectacular view of the autumn splendour, like a gigantic canvas being painted before their eyes. A job to envy. Campaigning in snow, a job few envy.

7) Birds of all sizes and shape bunch up enjoying the bounty of the land while readying for their journey south; voters copy them, enjoying the bounty of political ideas being cast about, like the fireweed seeds blowing in the wind.

6) Rivers and lakes get all puffed up with mountain runoff from on high, just like some people we’ll meet on the campaign trail.

5) Farmers, and other food producers, finally recognized as one of the top 10 most important jobs in the land, begin harvesting; hopefully the crop is exceeded only by the bumper crop of promises bound to be dropping like the deciduous tree leaves.

4) The ungulates are on the move: moose, deer, elk in their autumn rut, flexing their horns and huffing and puffing to attract the lady ungulates, while hunters rumble through the bush hoping their paths will cross with some of the critters before the season ends. The candidates emulate hunting behavior, only they’re hunting for an X to hang on a ballot, rather than horns on the wall.

3) The gulls leave town, the ravens return, salmon climb the fish ladder, people and bears pick berries, hopefully not clashing, tourists bunch up like the birds, leading the way south before the birds are airborne, while the Yukon Snowbirds polish their rigs, ready for the “start-your-engines” signal – the first snowflake on the windshield. Poof, they’re gone, perhaps taking their vote with them.

2) Schools, all dressed up in new paint, open their doors as merchants open theirs welcoming Mom’s, Dad’s and young ones to shop, shop, shop in preparation for new school friends and experiences, while the candidates hope we’ll welcome them at our doors with the same enthusiasm schools welcome the children.

1) The surest sign of all summers nearing the bottom of its downhill run is. . .  (a roll of the drums please) . . . road and sidewalk repairs begin.

Electioneering …

An election, the friendliest time of year

Candidates hail all they see

Hand’s they’ll be a shakin’

The leave’s we’ll be a rakin’

On the doors they’ll be a knockin’

Their policies to be a hawkin’

Oh, you matter much to me, I’ll even drink tea,

Especially if your Xs are definitely there for me.

A tip of the hat to the Farmer’s Almanac, which promises: “If the storms of September clear off warm, all the storms of the coming winter will be warm as well.”

Hope springs eternal, and, hey, this is a year winter won’t have a hard time beating summer.