I'm not sure why, but for some reason I've enjoyed this season more than I ever remember enjoying fall before. Perhaps it's because I have a new waterproof raincoat and I'm out on the mountain trails more regularly, but I have found the colours, the smells and the light to be especially remarkable this year. Today, for example, Winston, my loyal canine companion and I hit the trails late in the afternoon. It had rained most of the day, but now the sun was low in the sky and the way the light slanted through the branches and captured the colours of the remaining leaves on the trees ~ well, it was simply breathtaking. I had to stop dead in my tracks and just stare at the wondrous shimmer and slashes of light. The trail was covered in a thick blanket of leaves, you could not see the ground beneath it, and the musty, earthy smell was intoxicating. As we wandered along I gave a silent thanks to Mother Nature for giving us such a spectacular afternoon. Even on the rainiest of days Winston and I have headed out, and after the first few minutes we stop noticing the wet and simply enjoy the stillness and beauty of the forest.
Many years ago a beloved Unitarian minister helped me discover the beauty in the winter months, too, when the fall colours have long turned to a dull brown and the branches of the trees are stark. He reminded me that Mother Nature is simply resting, gaining strength, preparing for spring when the world will once again be blessed with a burst of new life/energy. The winter forest may look bare, but beneath the surface new life is already stirring, preparing for the longer days and warmth of the new season. Like the forest, the minister said, we too need downtime, to rest and recharge. Our inner seasons may not coincide with the outer seasons, but there is much to learn from the cycle of Mother Nature.
A friend recently suggested that we are in the 'fall' of our lives. This notion didn't sit well with me as I realized the truth of her words, but today's walk was a reminder of what a beautiful season this is. As well, my dear friend Leslie pointed out that there has been a sudden flutter of posts on my blog. Could it be that my biological season is fall, but my internal rhythm is now in early spring, where the writing juices are beginning to flow again, waiting to burst into a flurry of novel chapters? I have two mini-writing retreats planned for the next month so I hope this blogging is simply a warm-up to the bigger work that's waiting.