There are some moments when, even in the middle of living them, you are already missing them. During my last walk, at the height of a perfect summer I knew I was creating a memory. In his wonderful book, The Old Ways, Robet MacFarlane describes a similar moment on one of his walks:
…and the sun loosed its summer light, as it had done for uncountable years across the sea, the island and my body, a liquid so rich that I wanted to eat it, store it, make honey of it for when winter came.
Shortly after my last light-filled walk we had a few days of rain, the weather was still warm. And then it all changed. It felt like getting kicked out of paradise- the skies turned an ugly leaden grey, storms raged, and the temperature dropped. It has been like this for about 10 days now, and autumn feels awfully close. No eating dinners outside,the doors closed, the heat back on, the thin, light clothing suddenly feeling inadequate and out of place, and giving way slowly to fleece and wool.
I just haven’t had a chance to prepare myself to let go of this idyllic summer so rare in the northern areas where I’ve lived for the past 36 years (Northern Scotland and Holland).
Fed up with being cooped up in the house for yet another day, I took off this morning for a short local walk. It was just an hour’s loop, but it was blissful. Contrary to a few days ago when I went out despite an approaching storm and got properly soaked to the bone, the rain held off. The wind was refreshing. There was a strange moment, I saw 3 large buzzards cruising on thermals above a small forest. And I walked along the canal where swallows were swooping for insects, I was in their flight path, so they would whoosh close by. As a background to all the bird flights, there were fighter jets training above the clouds- once in awhile their black arrow shapes would break into view far above the birds- and the noise was deafening.
Still that was part of this walk, the nature was beautiful, and I came home more able to accept the possible early change of seasons.