I miss autumn. I've been hearing reports from my northern friends of cooler temperatures; rumors of fall foliage -- yellow, auburn, orange. Here in southwest Louisiana, flowers continue to bloom, mosquitos still bite, and temps soar near 90. Okay, today is rainy, so it's a bit cooler, high 70s. The weather folks talk of the upcoming "change in season," about "fall colors," but there's no vibrance. The landscape mostly remains green, with some brown and a little pale yellow thrown in.
I miss the pungent scent of decaying leaves and woodsmoke, the crispness in the air. I miss crunching giant maple leaves beneath my shoes, sipping tart apple cider from the northside farmers' market, and the pumpkin patch at Reilly's Farm.
Of course, in winter, I won't be missin' a thing.
When my in-laws moved from Pennsylvania to Arizona many years ago, I assumed she missed the beauty of autumn, as I am now. So every year, usually sometime in October, the boys and I would take a hike and gather the prettiest leaves we could find. We'd take them home and press them between the pages of big books like Webster's Dictionary, Gray's Anatomy, and an Edgar Allan Poe anthology. When sufficiently dried, we'd mail the leaves to her in a large manila envelope. She'd tell us she used the leaves to decorate her Thanksgiving table.
This is a photo of my mom's property in the Maryland panhandle. Taken on October 17th last year, the leaves are past their prime, but still pretty. This land has been in my family for generations. Mom has a cottage there where my sisters and I love to take our families. I miss it dearly.