Autumn picture gallery

Hello everyone and welcome to the latest blog of the Olivia Rose Diaries on November 26th 2021.

Bracken at the top of the field.

I had hoped that this blog would be a photo album of the last days of blazing autumn splendour. Unfortunately the splendour has disappeared under a blanket of dank, freezing fog for the whole of the week and so I have had to think again. 

Our misty lane.

Here’s my top tip for when the weather gets gloomy. Pull on your wellie boots and a woolly hat, grab your phone or camera, and brave the cold. Search out a leafy lane or a woodland track and, instead of scowling at the fog for hiding the trees, cast your eyes downwards and look for the small signs of autumn, the ones we usually tread on or ignore completely in our bid to see the big picture.

Leaves may be just as beautiful on the ground as they are in the air, and the sweet chestnut husks look like tiny hedgehogs – with a bit of imagination. The bark of old trees is home to moss and ferns and the bracken is striking in bronze and gold.

Leaf arrangement.
Sweet chestnut husks.
Trees – a work of art.
Mushrooms – bit slimy in the rain.
Higgeldy piggeldy acorns.

I took all these shots on my phone, not more than a five minute walk from the cabin, and came back feeling quietly content. 

Autumn is also a time to enjoy sitting by the fire. As I warmed myself by the woodburner the urge to write something a bit different came upon me. Unluckily for you, I am going to share it with you. It’s not a poem – I can’t write poetry and am in awe of people who can make words rhyme – it is more a stream of thought, a rambling ode to autumn and rambling is something we can all do.

Here’s my humble offering. Hardly a masterpiece, but a nice way to spend an afternoon by the fire

Ode to Autumn

‘If autumn were a colour it would be gold’, said the farmer, grateful for a plentiful harvest.

‘Not for me’, said the hiker. ‘It would be red, for the maples and the pin oaks.’

‘If autumn had a voice it would be sad,’ said the poet, longing for spring.

‘Not for me,’ said the child as he ran headlong through the fallen leaves. ‘It sounds like fun.’

‘If I could hold autumn in my hand it would feel dry and brittle,’ said the gardener, thinking of his lawn covered in leaves.

‘Not at all,’ said the angler dreaming of his catch. ‘It would be soft, like the early morning mist drifting along the river.’

‘If autumn had a smell it would be cold and damp,’ said the grandmother, pulling her chair closer to the fire.

‘Not for me,’ said the mushroom picker. ‘It smells earthy and rich.’

‘If I could taste autumn it would be like a harvest supper,’ said the vicar, imagining his empty pews filled with people.

‘Not for me,’ said the chef. ‘It would taste of sweet chestnuts and sloe gin.’  

As for me, autumn is a mixed blessing.

Long walks on a frosty morning weighed against the long dark nights.

A last blaze of colour before the landscape becomes monotone, bare branches stark against grey skies. 

A sense of something ending, of life turning inwards for a while before the seasons turn once more.

On balance, I love the autumn, for all the reasons listed above and many more. What do you think?

And that’s it for this week. This weekend we pack up and head off to another house sit. I expect to have some different pictures for you next week.

Take care. See you soon.

MJ

8 thoughts on “Autumn picture gallery

  1. Mary-Jane, your photographs are getting seriously good. You are seeing wonderful things, that many would not even notice. I like your Ode as well, which have read over and over.

    Please keep going with your Blogs, as they are becoming a boost in our week.

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    1. Thank you Antony. Glad you liked pics and the ode as well – quite nervous as to whether to include it or not! My blogs are a boost to me as well so I’ll keep inflicting them on you.
      MJ

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  2. I just found you (through Amazon – now have both of your books) and I love your blog, too! I am in the USA – deep in the heart of this big country, on a bluff over the Ohio river. Reading your very different life is wonderful during this difficult time.

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    1. Hi Bronwyn. Lovely to hear from you and so glad you enjoyed the books and have found to be blog. The internet may have its downsides but you can’t beat it for connecting people.
      Best wishes.
      MJ

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  3. I’ve been away for a few days in the Gers, so I’m a bit late commenting. Lovely photos, and how true it is that the small things beneath one’s feet are worth looking at. During last year’s lockdowns I learned to look more closely at what is around us and to appreciate it better. I like your Ode to Autumn. It has always been my favourite season, but I admit this November has been challenging!

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