Winds of change, or something like that, no? I love this time of year. It's a bittersweet love, to be sure. Things are changing, summer is winding down, people leave, there is a slight sense of melancholy in the air. Or maybe it's just me! I must say that autumn in Wayne County is spectacular. The air is certainly crisp but not dreadful (although over the weekend there was a snowstorm that seemed to be a blasting harbinger of winter). The colors on the aspens on the mountains are glorious russets and glowing yellows that are almost iridescent in the direct sunlight, framed so sharply against the stark white of the tree trunks. Elk are bugling on the mountainsides (or so I'm told; haven't heard them myself), the sky is that unbelievably deep Utah blue, cobalt or even navy in the evening light. There are still visitors here, but everything is slowing down a bit as creatures human and otherwise start to prepare for that inevitable winter thing, hibernation.
If only we people did hibernate! I'd love it, right about now. I think that's my thing in the winters: hibernation like a bear. Along with skiing! Right now I'm hunkered down in one of my favorite bookstores, Robber's Roost, and I'm wishing I could just stay here for the next several weeks, writing quietly and with purpose. Tomorrow, however, I head into the field, so there will be another weeklong dearth of writing, here and elsewhere. I do bring my journal into the field, so that remains constant in my life no matter what.
This amazing, often infuriating, endlessly eye-opening thing we call life is so interesting, is it not? What we set up for ourselves surprises us so, at times. I still get surprised, although I have really created every moment that led up to this one. I have created this very moment in my life, whether I consciously planned it or not. Rather humbling to remember that when I start complaining about things.
I must say that I am still so happy to be here right now, in what is perhaps my favorite place on earth, surrounded by the land that nurtures and sustains me so. When I walk by the river later, and take out my journal and write in it to the melody of the water tripping and rippling past, I know already that I will feel so secure, so safe and familiar and held, in a way, by the red and cream rocks and the big blue sky and the birds of prey that circle and swoop far above. It hugs my soul close while simultaneously letting it soar free, and isn't that all we want? A paradox there, but what we want: to be held and to be free at once. And to live in a place we adore.
What is your place that you adore? How and why does it hold you? And how, if you will, do you hold it while also letting it be free?
Time for me to head out to visit my horse (with a bag of apples! He and his pasture-mates will be thrilled) and then the river. Till next week, then.