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Around my house, this Saturday is a bit of a day of mourning. In some instances, there is weeping and wailing. It is the Autumnal Equinox. Or the first day of fall. It signals shorter days and colder weather on the horizon.

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Our middle child has been busy lately. Last May she graduated college. In the fall, she backpacked through Europe — sightseeing by day, couch-surfing by night. At the beginning of this year, she and a college friend flew to Peru to teach English for a few months at a small school in the moun…