A time to remember…
I was born in mid-September, so autumn has always been a season that has special memories for me. Growing up in Georgia, autumn came on somewhat slower than here in the northeast, but the feelings of the first chill air, the changing trees, the smells of leaves burning still return every year and take me back. I lived on a small dirt road (at least it was then, now it’s paved) in Decatur. Our front yard was fairly small, though as a child it felt quite large. There were two large oak trees in the front yard so leaves had to be raked. They were usually piled at the edge of the yard in the roadside where they might have gotten jumped in a few times before they were eventually burned. This would not be a raging flame, but instead a slow smoldering smokey fire that would fill the neighborhood with a wonderful oaky smell. I get those same feelings when I walk in my back yard, kicking the acorns from the oaks in the back by the fence and smell our wood stove on the chilly breeze.
As I walked the dog this morning up past Joan and Joel’s house, there were two does watching us from across the street. Later, a little farther up the road, two more does bounded off through the woods as we approached, their white tails waving as they leapt away. Margot and I walked to our usual turn around and as we began back down the hill a red fox darted out into the road and, upon seeing us approaching, thought better of it and turned back up Joel’s drive way. Margot bounded through the leaves on the side of the road like the child in the leaf pile.
Last night I went to play cards with friends on Bostwick Road. Dave and Mary Rose own the Bostwick House B&B and their gothic Victorian sits high on Bostwick hill with amazing views out across the valleys south of Ithaca. The sky was an amazing color with beautiful thin clouds at dusk and a huge full moon was rising from the east. They have several laying hens that roam the yard and scratch about, following you like pets. A rare night.
I walked the trail to the falls last weekend at Taughannock Park to enjoy the peak fall color. We are so lucky here to be surrounded by amazing landscapes and the glory of nature. The road sides and farm fields are so beautiful this time of year with red sumac, asters and golden rod, teasels and wild grape. Fields of drying corn and weeping sunflowers stretch out under the autumn clouds. Maples glow an amazing red-orange against blue sky. The vibrance of the colors almost difficult to look at.
The splendor of this transition will be over all too soon, giving way to bare trees, cold wind, and the inevitable snows of winter. Time to hunker down and feed the wood stove and make a big pot of soup.
All images are Copyright © George Cannon, All Rights Reserved.