Friday, November 12, 2010

To Every Place There Is a Season

Or, as I've been thinking lately, to every season there is a place. It is fall in the northern hemisphere now, and I can honestly think of no place I'd rather be than at home in Virginia. The air is so crisp in the morning you can almost hear it snap in time with the crunching of the leaves under your feet. What leaves are still left on the trees blaze with color, mocking the monotonous green they bore all summer. I was in Florida for almost two weeks of October (possibly the subject of another post here, when I'm ready to write it), and I worried that I might miss the best part of fall. I did not, and am reveling in it now. I would offer photographic evidence if it weren't for the large bandage on my right hand, from which only my fingertips emerge for typing. Another possible blog post, but not today's.

Fall will segue into winter before I know it, and I shall dream of being in northern Iceland, looking out on a sea of white. There was something so magical about northern Iceland in the winter last year that I would not have been surprised had an elf or troll made an appearance however brief. The cold solitude inspired a feeling of strength, of survival, of possibilities. To be complacent would be to freeze and die. The shortness of daylight is more than offset by the night's auroral possibilities, a ceiling of color over the white floor.

In a world of wealth, spring would call me to Asia, to the streets of Hue or the temples of Angkor. I would doff the cold of the north and don the heated blanket of the south. I would trade the movement required to keep warm for the stillness required to endure the heat. I would savor the smells and sounds of the market even if not enamored of the excessive attention given to a Western visitor. I would try to draw the rooftops of the city as the clouds rolled above them before a rain and find music in the cacophony of car horns.

What does it say that my summer place sits at almost the same latitude as my winter one? I would love to spend a summer in Norway, making the most of some of the best Mother Nature has to offer without the hot flashes she offers places such as Virginia. My energy would stretch with the daylight, and I could forego my usual inclination to want to go to sleep the day before I must awaken. I would love to hike through some of the mountains while leaving the hang-gliding off them to younger son. I would love to dabble my toes in the cold of a mountain stream or wash my face in a waterfall.

Awakening from daydreams now and returning to the mundanities of the day. At least it is fall and I am where my soul needs to be in that season. Yes, life is good.