"The fairest of the seasons"

"Fall is our season of filling up and overflowing."
                                  -Glennon Melton, State of Our Union - Momastery

Due to some lack of communication leading to a missed deadline, my freshly-minted kindergartener is not yet taking the school bus, so my weekday mornings begin, much like last year, with getting her to school. Instead of walking buddy, however, this year I'm playing chauffeur. The houses zip by too quickly merit much observation, so I've taken to watching the treetops during my driving duties. And what a treat it's been.

Though fall has always been my favourite season, I don't believe I've ever payed such close attention to the death throws of chlorophyll; the transition from full-out green to a myriad of yellow, orange, and red always seemed to happen in the blink of an eye. It was as if one day I'd look up and discover that summer's green had vanished, replaced fall colours in full array. This year, as my daughter's advent of school has left me ripe with anticipation for summer's end; I've been watching the microsteps, and have been pleasantly surprised in the variety I see.

Some trees lightened slowly, with paler greens and yellows dappled throughout more livelier foliage. Others seemed to suffer from sunburn, with full-out chlorophyll loss on the canopy trickling down to the trunk, or a toasting going from right to left along its branches. And every so often I do come across a tree that seems to have uniformly changed colours at the switch of a light,  even if it's the same species of all of its slowly transitioning neighbours. I don't know what causes these variations (perhaps a difference in the root systems?), but I love the effect: that one burnished accent tree highlighting the lesser extremes of the spectrum that surround it. Makes me smile everytime. Add a ray of sunlight hitting it at just the right angle, and that tree just glows. It's enough to make a girl forgive the sun for shining right in her eyes as she maneuvers through the morning's rush-hour traffic. How is it that the angle of light that most annoys me is the one that makes this magic?

Autumn is here. My calendar - and my daughter - will tell me it's technically still summer, but the trees say otherwise. And I tend to trust their judgement. Enjoy :)


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