I spent several hours yesterday ambling along a path that runs parallel with the river—though seldom within sight of the water, and at times, quite a distance away. You can follow this trail for miles in either direction. Moreover, it links and crosses various bike paths and walkways, forming a network that could, conceivably, take you to every corner of the state…and beyond.
Not that I was nearly that ambitious. I doubt I covered much more than a mile during my three-hour outing. As I say—I ambled. Which means I wandered this way and that, enjoying the sunshine and changing season, looking at wildflowers and weeds, leaves and tress, squirrels, crows, and turkey vultures soaring effortlessly in a blue sky across which herds of puffy white clouds raced before a stiff, almost cold wind.
I wasn't looking for exercise, but renewal. After several weeks of floundering about, not quite depressed, but certainly burning low and finding it harder every day to drag myself up and out, I needed to regroup, to obtain both solace and spark.…
Autumn is taking over—that's for sure. Yet hereabouts, you still have to search for much in the way of leaf color. An occasional maple might have a branch or two with reddish-orange leaves. The woodbine is starting to turn scarlet. Now and then a squarish yellow poplar leaf lay beside the trail, or a big sycamore leaf—though most of these were still green with only a tracing of brown in their ribbing.
The brightest hues were still found in the wildflowers—asters and goldenrod, ironweed, daisies, thistle. Fading, perhaps, but nevertheless quite lovely.
Life and beauty are all transitory. To everything there is a season. The month is drawing to a close. Another autumn is taking center stage. The earth spins and follows its eternal pathway around the sun.
Some think of autumn as a time of bittersweet. They see a sadness beyond the beauty—a vision of winter and darkness to come. But I've never minded winter, never feared the cold and waning light. Because I believe in spring.