Oct 24 2022

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The End of the Warm Season

Posted at 1:55 pm under Blog Post

“Why am I indoors?” I asked myself at noon yesterday after working at my desk all morning. With temps in the 60s, it seemed silly to be inside. After all, a long, cold season lies directly ahead. Even though I’m ready for it, there’s no sense wasting the few warm days left.

I hopped in my car. Judy and I drove down to Dead Creek the day before yesterday to enjoy the warm temps and do a little birding, so I wasn’t in the mood for a long drive again. The woody section of the local rail trail is only ten minutes away. I figured that would do. I drove there, then walked up the wide gravel path, kicking up leaves and spooking a couple garter snakes along the way. I stepped over a few woolly worm caterpillars, as well, warning me that it’s going to be a long, cold winter. Good thing I came out.

There was a little color in the leaves still clinging to the trees, but the so-called peak foliage has been gone for a while now. Between the last peak color and the first skiable snowfall in the mountains, Vermont belongs to Vermonters. I reveled in the beauty and solitude of the quiet woods, ignoring the occasional cyclist passing through.

After walking a mile and a half, I sat down on a knoll overlooking a small pond in a clearing. Crows cawed in the distance. There were also songbirds out there, flitting about in the half-naked trees, but they were too far away to identify. No matter. I just sat there a while, enjoying the warmth and still air, with sunlight filtering through the mostly cloudy sky. I marveled at how quickly the warm season passed this year. The fresh verdure appeared not too long ago, or so it seemed. The days go by a lot faster now that I’m in my 60s.

I took my time walking back to the parking lot. I drove past a farm selling pumpkins for only five bucks and thought about getting one. Sat on the patio in my back yard reading for a while as Canada geese flew overhead. I sat until the sun passed behind the house. Then I caught a chill and went inside. The small bag of nuts on me for the resident chipmunk never came out for my pocket. He never showed. Could Chippy be settled in for winter already? I don’t think so but I’m sure he will be soon.

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