Monthly Musing – November 2015 – Kicking up the leaves
Many years ago
in one of my first jobs, when I was much younger and less inclined to think
before speaking, a colleague declared how much she loved her perfume because it
reminded her of the smell of autumn.
“Dead leaves,” I agreed
enthusiastically, thinking about crunching through forest paths and inhaling
that wonderful woody leaf-mould scent.
“My perfume does not smell of dead
leaves!” she said huffily, and refused to speak to me for the rest of the
unfortunate exchange makes me smile every autumn when I see the leaves falling
and smell the change in the air. I love
the rustling, shuffling sound the leaves make as you walk through piles of
them, and the crispy dryness as they break into a thousand pieces under your
feet. When they’re wet and slippery
they’re not so enticing, true, but it’s the cool, sharp autumn days I like,
when you can wrap up and anticipate the coming winter.
obviously a season that speaks to many people, from poets to the New England
“leaf peepers”, Nature’s final grand colourful gesture of the year is something
that nobody can miss. It’s not just
people either. We had a dog once that
used to love the autumn leaves. He used
to wait for you to shuffle through them and kick them into the air, trying to
catch each leaf as it fell before scrabbling through them himself as if to try
to make them fly back up into the air.
Our current dog is less than impressed with the autumn leaf
situation. He doesn’t want you to
shuffle them or kick them and will actually make a point of walking around
piles of them instead of over them which I find more than a little amusing
given that this is the dog that will dive into any available scuddy water at
any opportunity! He is, however, very
interested in the squirrels which visit our garden to bury nuts and pinch tulip
bulbs, hopping across the leaf-strewn grass to find the perfect spot to hide
Autumn, to me,
feels like a time of winding down. The
earth is getting ready for the “quiet time” of winter. The trees’ beautiful leaves are the last
fanfare before they stand as stark skeletons for the next few months, reminding
us that winter is on it’s way and waiting for the world to turn and the sun to
warm the soil again,. Just like the
squirrels hiding their nuts, we instinctively gather what we need for the cold
months and whilst we might not actually hibernate, we reduce our sphere of
outdoor activity and keep warm within our houses, waiting for the spring.
Is it a sad
season? A little, I think. But all seasons change and a new one is
always around the corner. It’s one thing
we can be sure of, and that’s not a sad thing at all.