Watery gray mist swirls past my windowpane as trees huddle and are slowly striped of their pride and glory. No birds dart from their branches this morning, nor do the deer shelter in the shade.
It’s as if the natural world has let out a sigh after a long day’s work and is slowly, carefully disrobing, relaxing, and preparing for a long, well-deserved rest.
Summer is finished. And so is my time at the lodge. Today I turn in my uniform and pick up my last paycheck. There will be no more rising before dawn to greet the bleary-eyed tourist with fresh perked coffee. No more jokes with the cook. No more laughs with housekeeping.
Unlike the scene outside my window though I’m not winding down. In fact, I’m ramping up.
Fall is my favorite time of year for various reasons. While the calendar says a year is coming to an end, I see it as the beginning. It’s most likely because that’s when school starts and new lessons are learned, but I like to think the Bilbo, Frodo, and Sam played a part is shaping that point of view.
The travel bug is always strongest for me in the fall.
I don’t want to sit still. I want to climb mountains just to see what’s on the other side of the valley. I want to drive long distances just so I can smell the earthy perfumes of new towns. I want to listen to conversations I don’t understand. I want to touch people I have never known.
This fall I get to do just that. And I’m going farther than I’ve ever gone before. Uganda.
It had initially been my intention to blog from there, but after some careful consideration I decided I’m taking my journal, pens, and a camera. I’m leaving the laptop at home.
It’s not because I’m scared of damage or theft, rather it’s because I want to be fully present as I serve alongside the people there and I can’t do that if I spend half my time planning what I’m going to write next.
A wise man once said, “There’s a time and a season for everything… A time to plant and a time to harvest.”
It’s nearing the end of our season of harvest here in the States, but there’s plenty of time to plant a few extra “seeds” of ideas. This time of year, I end up with ideas of plenty. I look forward to sharing whichever ones end up sprouting when I return home in mid-November.
Tenna' ento lye omenta, aa' menealle nauva calen ar' malta.
(Until we next meet, may your ways be green and golden.)