Right now, the October days in Tel Aviv are shorter, windy and bearable. As the weather is transitioning the storks and tourists are slowly flocking home… No doubt - summer (קיץ) is over, and we are experiencing autumn (סתיו).
The division of the year into 4 seasons, as we know it in our time, was first mentioned in Hebrew literature about 2,000 years ago, and even then, it was not mentioned as 4 seasons with their current names – winter (חורף), spring (אביב), summer (קיץ) and autumn (סתיו), but as 4 periods (תקופות) - "the period of Tishray", "the period of Tevet", "the period of Nisan" and "the period of Tamuz". Every period (תקופה) is named after the Hebrew month opening the season (עונה).
It is only in the Sephardic Hebrew writings discovered from medieval times, that the notion of different seasons (עונות) of the year appear, including the ones between winter and summer; indeed, this was the first time the Hebrew language addresses the 4 individual seasons (עונות).
Both the autumn (סתיו) and spring (אביב) have very special meanings in Hebrew: they are the periods/seasons representing nature, freedom, growth and renewal, the connection to nature and circle of life and the time for new opportunities and reflections about the days to come. No wonder, as these are the 2 periods where all Jewish holidays occur, and that there are a great many people named "אביב" or "סתיו" (both girls and boys) in Israel. Also, all the sales (סוף עונה) are happening during these periods/seasons; as well, these are the "high seasons" for Israeli weddings ("עונת החתונות"). No wonder these 2 seasons – autumn (סתיו) and spring (אביב) with their tremendous flurry of activities, celebrations, writings and literature deeply impacting Hebrew language and culture.
We wish you to enjoy the autumn season (עונת הסתיו) – it's refreshing renewing atmosphere, and the blessings that are coming with the first rain - called "blessing rains" (גשמי ברכה). May you have new exciting beginnings and opportunities as well as surprising wonders and colorful sunsets.
סתיו - autumn אביב – spring
חורף – winter
קיץ – summer
עונה, עונות – season, seasons
סוף עונה – "sale"
עונת החתונות - wedding season
תקופה, תקופות - period, periods