Things have really slowed down hill on the hillside in the past two weeks…me included. While I do love the fall season more than any other, it feels different this year. I am outside often, working in the yard on clearing the spot for my landscaping project, and in general trying to tidy up the great hillside.
The Swiss Chard is beautiful, and along with the pansies I potted a couple of weeks ago, there is color in the yard in contrast to the yellow and red leaves falling. Yesterday whilst obtaining bird seed, I picked up a couple of brightly flowered brick-red baby mums to pot today. It has been rainy the last several days, so I have not been out as much, and the ground is too wet to do anything. We were finally able to get our senior flu vaccine last Friday, and while I tend to chalk my “do not want to do anything of effort malaise” right now to that, it is probably not related. Instead, I keep being reminded of a Willie Nelson song:
It gets easier as we get older, it gets easier to say not today
And it gets easier when we get older, to say go away, not today
I don’t have to do one damn thing that I don’t want to do…except for missing you, and that won’t go away.
It gets easier to say some other time, it gets easier to tell the world to wait
It gets easier to watch the world fly by and tell it I’ll catch up, but not today.Willie Nelson, It gets easier, from the album God’s Problem Child.
I have been working with a colleague on a revision to a paper that has been accepted for publication, and while normally I find the process challenging and enjoyable to make sense of what the data is telling us, it feels more like “have to” do work this week. Oh, I will do it, and on time for the submission deadline, but it does seem as if it gets easier to say “not today” but one can only do that a few times if one intends to have it done by “the day.” We pushed up our own deadline yesterday as she and her husband are headed “to the woods for a long weekend.” That stirred a longing for those trips Rand and I took to the Great Smoky Mountains, and up the Natchez Trace, and the still long-delayed road trip to the Canadian Rockies that had to be postponed because of COVID-19.
On our last trip there, we stayed again in Townsend, and the views from our cabin were breathtaking. Surrounded by windows on all sides, it was mesmerizing to just sit or stand and stare. The primary purpose–besides just to get away for a weekend–was for additional research on the New Deal structures in the National Park. The Civilian Conservation Corps constructed the park and many bridges, culverts, roadways, and of course, the famous grandstand from which President Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke at the dedication.
So yes, it is October, and the colors are amazing no matter where I look, no matter if it is in my mind’s eye, across the yard, into the woods, or up to the skies. And this too, shall pass.