It's really amazing I haven't talked about it yet, because Autumn is hands down my favorite season. I love the weather. The colors. The clothes. The food. So, it turns out, does Jane. I made pumpkin muffins the other day and she woke up from her nap before I could finish, so I held her while I mixed and gave her some of the canned pumpkin to keep her from diving into the bowl. And then she wanted more. And more. So we had pumpkin snack, and now she knows how to say pumpkin.
Yesterday morning I took the camera out for a walk in our yard. It has been windy the last few days and I was afraid all the gorgeous leaves would come down before I had a chance to capture them. Fortunately I made it just in time. While I was out there, with the breeze blowing and mist falling, I suddenly felt--Mmmm! I used to call them "perfect moments." I don't know if I really have the same experience now--it was almost a desperation for happiness suddenly and overwhelmingly fulfilled, then. Now, it's a similar feeling but deeper, grounding, peaceful. But exhilarating nonetheless. I walked around inhaling and snapping pictures like a maniac. For now, I'll call it and Anne Shirley moment. I was about to name everything Lake of Shining Waters. Pumpkin of the Orange Sunrise! So I thought I would share the pictures of our outdoor home with you, since the inside isn't yet fit for your eyes.
If you were to come see us, this is what you would see as you pulled in the driveway. You would see The Flaming Amarillo Ash as soon as you turned onto our road.
If you looked straight ahead, to the left of the house, you'd see the Haunted Chateau du Bois with its Impermeable Cerulean Cape, and the Wall of a Thousand Mountains. And our car.
If you looked to the right, you would see the Abandoned Garden of Cockaigne, with its derelict raspberries, prunes, and so forth.
From there, you could see the eastern wall of the house.
And down to Scatter Creek, whose name is compelling enough already.
Now that the leaves are falling, Soft Lichen Gloves are revealed on the fingers of the Ashes. And pretty much everything else. An unlooked for treat. The brambles are covered in giant swaths of some dead vine. What it is that could have so over-swept Himalayan Blackberry (which I think it may be), I don't know. But the blackberries are thriving beneath, as well as winterberry (another evocative, simple name--poor Anne), and many other plants I can't name.
And underneath all that tangle, look close now, branches covered with lush emerald moss. This is where the deer jump and tramp and nibble. I have half a mind to jump in myself, and hang the prickers. Wouldn't you?
Moving along the path where the deer have bent the grass, there's the Chateau again. And a clump of prairie. Our landlords are botanists, and throughout the years they lived here they would go to constructions sites and rescue...prairie. Dig up big pieces and transplant them. I just find that very endearing.
They also transplanted several madrones on the property. I think I mentioned that before. The madrone has a sort of shamanistic fascination for me. I smell the salt air. I get a little shiver. I can't explain it. It's in the blood.
We would spin around together, if you were here (maybe we'd even be wearing twirling skirts), and just take it in, and the wind would lift our air and we'd snatch at a couple falling leaves, and look back to the house. How welcoming it looks up there! Let's go in and have some tea. Would you like to try this bottle of raspberry cordial?
As a extra special treat, I hope you would stay the night. I would let you sleep in the sparest of spare rooms, but we don't have one, so you'd have to sleep with Jane. And you don't know how she kicks. Seriously. But to make up for it, you would come downstairs for some coffee in the morning and passing by the window, glance out into the fog. And you would say, like I did this morning, "Holy ****! There's a quail on our tree!"
"Dear old world, you are very lovely, and I am glad to be alive in you."
L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables