“Serena,” Raven sputtered excitedly as they walked to the cafeteria beneath the beautiful autumn maples.
Raven turned around and giggled. “Serena, what’s wrong with you?
“There’s this new cafe off campus.”
“So?”smiled Raven, walking as they talked.
“Well, they serve tea ,coffee, hot chocolate or pastries, but that’s not the exciting part.”
“Then what is?” Raven asked, stopping in her tracks.
“When you walk in the door, you go back in time.” Serena whispered. “I swear. I thought I’d been drugged. Even my clothes were from the middle ages. Everything was, the food….”
“Raven grabbed Serena’s hand. “What are you waiting for, let’s go!”
Here in the lovely autumn of the Appalachians, the sun streamed through the abundance of multicolored leaves still clinging to the trees. It was a day when I was compelled to take that last walk, look at my marigolds and asters one more time. The were so beautiful, it seemed that they were at their very peak.
But, I had read the weather forecast in the newspaper. The first frost was expected tonight. In the morning, the ground would be white with the first ice of winter, flowers would have that dark color, death awaiting the sun’s first glimmer, and that being their last. Winter.
We wait at the school bus stop in the summer sun. The air conditioner is on high at 7:30 a.m. It just cannot be that summer is over. There is a dogwood tree that I watch, next to a wild aster. They are my calendar, my watching, waiting for fall to come.
One foggy day, the dogwoods leaves have a tinge of red, now the berries show their cardinal souls. The aster that has looked like an ugly weed all summer explodes into a wild white bush, excited, thankful bees all around. Relax, close your eyes, fall has come.
It had been an exhausting trip for Colleen, but, finally she was at the front of the pub that had belonged to her family in England for over 150 years. Colleen, having been born in Georgia, in the United States had heard of this place since she was a child, sitting on her Grandpa’s knee.
Her Grandpa had always called her his, “Irish Colleen”, with her flowing red tresses. Suddenly, it felt real, she WAS that “Irish Colleen”.
“Colleen!” a voice shouted. She looked ahead in astonishment. Her cousin, Siobahn, was her mirror image! Grandpa was right! Irish genes were strong!
It was a simply beautiful spring day.” She thought. She couldn’t help but take in the tiny buds on flowers, mosses, now growing on damp stones, even the azure sky over head seemed especially lovely.
She reached down and gently lifted a rotting log, encased in a curly gray lichen. Just as she picked it up, a shiny creature writhed towards the from underneath the log
It’s just a blue-tailed skink, laughed her brother, a lizard!
She felt a little foolish, still, after all the excitement, she was sure the memory of this spring adventure would remain with her always.
After ten days of rain, the creeks had turned into raging rivers, fields where corn had just begin to show hope, were lakes of muddy brown. Roads had washed away in the loud, angry torrents.
Suddenly, the heaviness of water became too much for the steep, over developed vistas. Firetrucks warned the wealthy residents to get out-now. Forget packing the fancy furnishings, the mountain was giving away!
Our 1920’s bungalow sat safely on a gentle hill, above the swirling waters, below the sliding cliff sides. Now, the moist air was expectantly pleasant. In nature, all man is equal.
School was out for the summer at last. Families toured the bird reserve.
Everyone seemed happy, except poor Lillith, neatly spinning her web on a high post that she hoped would be out of the view of visitors who may not like her. She was beautiful, a young Black and Yellow Argiope (some called her a garden spider). She was useful, she dined on insects that humans did not admire.
The sun was setting, she had caught five meals, and was ready to settle down for the night.
“Goodnight, Lillith” I whispered. ” I will check on you tomorrow.”