I really enjoy these shorter days of sunshine, along with the rich autumn scents of woodsmoke and withering foliage as I walk the stone roads near Blooming Hill each day. The morning air is thick with magic and the afternoon views reflect the poignancy of the season. November is often thought of as one of the drabbest of the twelve months but I'm not really sure why. Even when the weather is cold and wet, the sweet, pungent aromas of long-gone summer and fast-approaching winter are fully blended this time of year, creating sweet memories and pleasant daydreams.
Early morning frost outlines every blade of grass and highlights the sap-dried veins of each fallen leaf creating white etchings on their leathery surfaces while tangles of sleeping vines camouflage the last of the season's berries. Late morning brings on a heavy dew that saturates my shoes and the crunch of the road becomes softer until later in the afternoon when the sun has had its chance to stream through the trees and chase away the water droplets caught deep in the woods.
The October oranges, yellows and reds may not be as abundant now but they are more mellow and refined as they mix with chilly greys and somber browns. It seems to me that November is all the richer for this. It's also time to take stock in the scenery before the last of the fall color fades and the harsh cold winter sets in just after Christmas, if we are lucky to go that long. Yet, before I have to think about that, my attention turns to the mosaics of leaves, either on the ground or still fluttering their colors while bravely clinging to branches for just a little while longer.
I walk these roads just about every day and, to me, every day they take on a seemingly different persona. This year, November has been very kind to save a few days of Indian Summer so that I may enjoy these colorful country roads just a bit longer. Here in the early days of this month, the roads are peaceful and, at the same time, a soft symphony of color and nature breathing deeply and slowing down yet, as always, leading me back home to Blooming Hill where I belong.