Saturday, November 1, 2008

Diary of a Fall Freak

It was October 1990 when my husband and I first visited Northern California and decided to take the job offer and leave So Cal for a season, quite literally. Yep. Autumn closed the deal. Don't get me wrong, the job offer was a good one, but the sights and smells of one incredible fall day in the little village where we now live completely won us over.

Today was such a day. As I stopped by the Post Office to mail my ballot (that's a whole other post, by the way), I had one of those moments when you stop thinking and start seeing all the beauty that surrounds you. And there is considerable beauty to behold. 

Fall in Northern California defies description, but I'm compelled to try. (I freely admit that this is undoubtedly a regrettable impulse, not dissimilar to the one various singers on American Idol have to sing Maria, Whitney, and Celine.) And to think I used to mock them...

Anyway, the magic begins with a bright blue sky, dotted with just enough fluffy white clouds to make a blustery day seem believable. (Have you seen these kinds of clouds? The ones that look so much like children's illustrations that you expect them to sprout mouths and start blowing up a gale or two?) Exhilarating. And I haven't even mentioned the colors yet! 

The trees on my street are just beginning to change hues, but in a week or two they will run the gamut from bright green to forest and sage green to various shades of yellow and orange to crimson red and burgundy. The flowers are still in bloom as well, and those big, Bay area roses are out of this world. For me, the profusion of color is downright mood-altering.

Which is a good thing...because there's been a lot on my mind this week, and I wasn't exactly singing Zip-a-dee-doo-dah when I left the house. Driving along, though, with leaves skittering across the street before me, I couldn't resist putting the windows down so I could hear the rustling. That's when the smell hit me, and a whiff of autumn in this corner of the world is always worth its weight in say nothing of the temperature, which somehow manages to combine the remnants of warm with the beginnings of brisk in a way that I find totally irresistible. 

It was and is heaven. Pure and simple. (And a little bit spicy.)

Okay, so I'm a fall freak. There's worse things, right? Like Christmas freaks. (What's that you say?) Oh, yeah. I'm one of those, too.  =)

Riding the Wind

Sometimes on a windy day
I close my eyes and fly away.
I float with leaves upon the breeze,
then skitter around the lofty trees.
I hop and skip from yard to yard
and frolic down the boulevard;
until, at last, my journey through,
I find my way back home to you.


Heather Anderson said...
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emily said...

i am a lover and obsessor of the fall. i posted last month about a "fall walk" i took with my son. i love all of the colors and crunching leaves. you'd love the pictures, i'm sure of it:-)

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