It’s early October but it feels like a beautiful, summer day. It’s a balmy 20 degrees and the sun is making its presence felt. A light breeze, like a mischievous child, runs playfully through the leaves and they rustle, as if bristling in annoyance.
I hear them long before I see them. I scan the sky, but all I see is blue. Then, like an apparition, a v-formation of black dots is winging its way towards me. There must be hundreds of them. The closer they get, the louder they get until they sound like a big, boisterous choir singing their hearts out, every one of them off key. I’ve always wondered how the same sound can be so sweet in the spring and so sad in the fall.
Within seconds, the geese are past me and heading south. “Don’t go,” I whisper because I know what their departure foreshadows. “It’s 20 degrees outside, don’t you feel the warmth?” But they ignore me and keep flying to their winter destination.
I can’t fool them. They know this summer-like weather is a fleeting illusion. The riot of crimson, deep golden yellow and fiery orange leaves on the trees are proof. And while a few diehard plants are in bloom, most have shed their colorful summer petals and curled into dried wisps of brown.
So, there is no escaping it. The geese are leaving; fall is here and winter will follow. Have a safe trip my feathered friends and see you in the spring.
It’s 6:00 am, my favourite time of day. Much of the world is still asleep and I am swathed in a blanket of silence. I’m comfortable with it; in fact I welcome it.
Many people experience the world through their eyes and notice a million little details that escape me. But I notice the sound track to life: the car with the bad muffler rumbling down the street as I headed to my new job, the tone of my daughter’s voice when she tried to convince herself she was fine with her partner going on a weekend get-away without her; a colleague’s cell phone chiming in her office while she was being raked over the coals by our boss.
I’m sometimes overwhelmed by the noise in our busy, fast-paced world so I embrace what I call my “morning moments”. When my husband gets up, he will turn the radio on. I’m so tired of hearing about COVID on the news. I’m tired of hearing the numbers of cases, deaths, intensive care admissions. But mostly, I hate what COVID is doing to people – and by that I don’t mean making them sick. I mean that it’s turning them into bitter, angry people regardless of which side of the vaccine fence they are on. But that is a whole other post for another day. Because right now I want to enjoy the calm.
I pour coffee and the hot liquid makes a sloshing sound in my cup just as the fridge compressor starts its low humming. I like these ordinary noises that often go unnoticed; they are part of the familiar rhythm of a new day. I set my cup on the table and tug on the handle of the patio door. It glides smoothly open on its metal tracks, letting the cool morning air and a medley of sounds rush in.
I know the song of the cardinal, blue jay and a few other species. But I don’t recognize the early birds I hear today and I wonder what they are. A light breeze rises and gently rustles the leaves on the trees. They have already started to turn from emerald green to scarlet and gold. Somewhere, high in one of those trees, a squirrel is loudly protesting something.
Daylight is leaking into the blackness, and slowly, the world around me is beginning to stir. In the distance, a dog is barking and a car engine starts. From the bedroom, I hear Ben’s feet hit the floor. My morning moments are over for today, but I have a date with them again at 6 am tomorrow.