Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Taking a Magic Leaf Ride

There are many things that have always stirred up curiosity in me, one of them being the seasons.

Kristen Sommer
The older I get I find that most people prefer the hot summer months as opposed to the pitfalls of the other three seasons. Fall is too cold; spring is never long enough; do not even mention winter and the snow! It never ceases to amaze me how many people are never satisfied with the weather, which is a thing that we can never control. Each season has something special that I cannot wait to experience time and time again.

For Fall, I literally ‘fall’ in to nostalgia. I always look forward to the changing color of the, as Bob Ross always said, ‘happy little trees.’  The mere mention of Fall fills my mind with the lush colors of rubies, sunny yellows, burnt ambers, and soft browns spreading over the horizon of mountains and hills in New Jersey and upstate New York.

As a child Fall was my favorite. My parents would always pack up a picnic lunch, bundle me up, and then we would drive in our truck for a few hours. If there was a set destination, I never knew. We would ride around the deserted and peaceful countryside, pointing out the brightest leaves, the biggest trees and of course (my favorite), all of the animals moving through the colorful and vivid forests along the road.

Finishing the day of the Magic Leaf Ride, we would somehow always end up near a farm and go apple or pumpkin picking, and always have hot apple cider. To me, at that young age, the farms magically appeared out of nowhere (How did Dad always find them!?), and the treasures of pumpkins and cider (and sweets!) was the perfect end to a perfect day of family time.

Though I no longer am able to go on leaf rides with my parents, as soon as the air turns crisp and clean, I already feel the pull of the road and call of the mystical leaf ride.

To this day, I still take time to drive through the valleys of upstate New York to appreciate the scenic views of Bear Mountain and other places that still have that old style appeal. Every now and again, I too find those magical farms which appear out of nowhere - calling to me with homemade cider and baked goodies and reminding me of happy times of my childhood.

I hope that everyone can find the beautiful treasures of Fall in their own backyard.

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