It’s like falling in love. The magic can’t last.

Autumn is sneaky. Although I’m always on the lookout for it, always primed for it, it bursts into its ephemeral majesty so quickly that I’m always startled by it, too. A tree that I remember as green from yesterday’s walk is crimson today. A tree that I don’t remember at all has taken up residence on some tantalizing band of the color spectrum between orange and pink. My eyes widen and my heart swells — it’s like falling in love. It has that same seed of sadness, that same prickle of death. The magic can’t last.

I’ve lived in places where there’s little change in seasons, where the mercury moseys slightly upward or subtly downward but the landscape doesn’t refashion itself. There’s an argument for such modesty. It doesn’t demand as varied a wardrobe.

And to have the kind of autumn that I savor here in North Carolina means to be plunged into a winter with just enough cold on the worst days to test your mettle, to denude those trees and turn them skeletal. I have neighbors behind me whose house I can barely make out in July. In January, though, I can almost watch the football games on the big-screen television in their lavishly windowed great room.

But that’s January. This is early November, when the leaves that haven’t yet lost their grip are making a brilliant statement, taking a final bow. Autumn in places that have a real autumn teaches you to live in the moment, to open yourself to the world around you, to pay homage, to pay heed. Fail that lesson and you just might miss the whole spectacle, which can retreat as suddenly and stealthily as it arrives. You’re left with regret. It’s a sorry cousin to remembrance.

— Frank Bruni, from “On a Personal Note” (NY Times, November 3, 2022)

Photo by DK @ Daybreak. 59° F. 6:30 to 6:50 am. November 1, 2022. Cove Island Park, Stamford, CT. More photos from Tuesday morning’s walk here.

Sunny Sunday Sketches…

Our volunteer day last week has my head still in the garden.  I have been following Ellen Ward’s posts @ Rough Sketch. Ellen kindly allowed me to share a few of her sketches.   I would encourage you to visit her Rough Sketch portfolio at this link.  What an incredible talent she has…and she listens to Ray Lamontagne when she sketches – – we have common inspiration in music (now if I could only sketch!)

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