There is something particular about the slant of light in the fall; it is as if the sun knows we are leaving and she is reaching out, stretching her rays and begging us to stay. No. Please. Pleeeaaase don’t go! All the while we are spinning away, our own hands outstretched, saying we are sorry, we’d really rather not leave but we must. The saying “absence makes the heart grow fonder” holds true; fall is fleeting and therefore we (most of us at least) are mesmerized by her show.
Once a week I drive to the country to buy milk. And I take the long way home. I drive slow, slower than most would like, as I am staring google-eyed out the window. Other people, those not impressed by the light, pass me and flip me the bird. Truth-be-told I could care less. I intend to live to be one-hundred-years-old. If I succeed this means I only have fifty-six falls left in my short life. I intend to make the most of them.
This afternoon, while in the country, I saw a rainbow. I slammed on the brakes and my milk went flying; my new car has now been appropriately christened. I got out and took the camera I had on hand — my phone. I focused on the rainbow and snapped my shot. At nearly the same time an osprey took flight and let out a haunting call. For an ephemeral moment I was one with the world; this moment was so perfect I thought my chord tendineae, my heart strings, might rupture; if they had you’d find me laying dead by the side of the road with an orgasmic grin on my face and my car covered in milk (or perhaps, by that time, cheese). But I didn't die because I have fifty-six autumns remaining. Perhaps, in my hundredth year, my heart strings will finally give out while I’m puttering around outside— what an amazing way to go.
In the meantime I’m stretching those cardiac tendons of mine and driving like a half-wit through the back country roads. If you come across my dawdling orange car you have two options: 1) show me your middle finger, press on the gas and get to wherever you are going in an expedited manner or 2) you can pull over and listen to the birds and watch the leaves dance in the light and breath in the crisp fall air and know what it truly feels like to be alive. 'Tis entirely up to you.