October 8, 2012
White Dog carried in a yellow leaf which had dropped from the huge sheltering tree in our yard which we have been encouraged to take down but do not have the heart to harm. This is a ritual My Girl and I have developed over the years to "officially" mark the changing of the season. Sometimes it is later in the month; other years it comes with Balloon Fiesta.
We sat together in the long light of afternoon, WD and I, enjoying the sunlight that in summer scorches any so bold as to just sit beneath it. Now it is warm and caressing and feels good on my old bones.It is past the time of roasting chile smells; the crop being long in. The air is pure and crisp and sparkling.
For the past few mornings we have not greeted the day by rushing into the living room and throwing open the doors and windows...it has become chill enough that we wait until after breakfast to test the possibility. This does not make YoYoMa happy as he LOVES sleeping on the open aired sun-porch but then again last night it was he curled into the tight ball (tail over nose) tangled in the blanket overflow from our bed. We still have our window open (although Steve suggested that maybe we might want to at least lower it a bit). White Dog and I were all snuggled together, wrapped in the newly switched winter blankets so we were snug and warm. The others found practical solutions that guaranteed comfort and kept the pack all close together the way we have come to enjoy for our night sleeps. Quinn likes the cooler weather because it seems kinder to his demons. He has fewer manic moments and sleeps better in the cold drafty areas of the hall just outside the bedroom.
Tonight is Steve's late night but the kids are nervously watching the door, confused by the increasingly earlier nightfall. they think he should be home soon instead of still having hours to wait.
It is pumpkin season finally and that makes us all happy. The decorations in the neighborhood remind us that we better stock up and get to work "putting up" pumpkin puree for pies and tamales and freezing spicy Mayan pumpkin, chile, and turkey stew. Inevitably we feast on pumpkin and empty our larder long before the fresh orbs are available again.
We hear fewer birdies singing in the morning and they seem fewer still when they settle at night. Even the mean roadrunner who took up residence in our area for a while is gone...as are all of the little fence lizards.
The White Dog Army loves autumn and it cooler possibilities to be more active; in many ways this is our favorite of the seasons. But there is something so breathtakingly beautiful about the colors of the Bosque and snow dusted mountains at this time of year that reminds us of the ephemeral quality of life. They encourage us to savor every breath and sight and smell...we fight to not waste a minute while at the same time wishing to be locked in autumn's amber to forever preserve the moment.