Into the basking warmth of the day there had crept, with the approach of evening, that heartening crispness which heralds the advent of autumn. Already, in the valley, some of the trees had begun to try on strange colours, in tentative experiment against the coming of nature’s annual fancy dress ball, when the soberest tree casts off its workaday suit of green and plunges into a riot of reds and yellows. (P.G. Wodehouse)
As I was driving in western Pennsylvania yesterday afternoon, I was in the midst of the greenly-leaved trees I’ve enjoyed the last few months. But here and there I noticed some light yellow-ish and red-ish leaves peeking out among the green. A new season is beginning, and here in the northern parts of North America, Nature is getting ready for her Annual Fancy Dress Ball.
I love Fall. But many of my friends and family don’t want it to come. One friend sent me a short text on Friday:
Last day of summer 😳
I get it. Not only are the warm, sunny days of Summer fading away, but Winter’s cold, windy, dreary gray-sky days are coming. “Is this winter going to be worse than last year?” is a question on many minds. I get it.
But let’s stop and think about Fall. Now. Not about the past season that’s fading away. Not about the season that’s coming in a few months. But think about where we are Right Now. We are each in a unique Time and a unique Place. This is our reality, our Present. Stop right now and be aware of who and what is around you – sights and sounds and smells and touches – experience these and respond to them. Life is present.
It’s good to remember the past, but not dwell on it, not let it keep us from moving ahead. And it’s good to think about what’s coming and to make practical preparations. But not be thinking ahead so much that we don’t pay attention to the present.
Fall is the most in-between season we have. It’s the easiest one to let slip by – by spending too much time missing summer and then spending too much time worrying about winter. But this year, as Fall begins, I plan to pay special attention to the time and place I’m in right now – my Present.
Let’s go together.