Autumn is my favorite time of year. The weather is comfortable (although I love hot summer days), the colours are beautiful in Southern Ontario, and the sound of scrunching leaves takes me back to my childhood in Montreal.
My mom's best friend had a backyard with huge maple trees. In the fall, they would shed their leaves in vast quantities, leaving hours of work to rake and bag them. Hours of work, unless my mom and I happened to come for a visit.
While the women visited in the living room or kitchen, I would be outside armed with a rake that was taller than I was. The abundance of leaves meant that the creation of the perfect pile of leaves for jumping in took some time to create, but worthwhile things often do. Sometimes, it would take me almost an hour to gather all the leaves in a huge mountain in the middle of the yard. And then I would carefully lay aside the rake....take aim and JUMP!
The size of the pile of leaves cushioned the impact and I would disappear into a bed of red, yellow and orange. The musty smell of nature would surround me, and I would peer out of the leaves at the sky. I would make a leaf angel in the pile. and then hop out, re-build the pile and jump again. I would repeat the sequence until I was summoned inside, grass stained, leaves sticking out of everywhere, and with a grin on my face.
My little girl is now discovering the joys of leaves. We don't have big enough trees to make a decent leaf pile, but there are tons on the walk to school. We might not be able to build a pile and jump in them, but we can certainly shuffle through them. I shocked my 4 year old yesterday by running ahead of her to the pile of leaves and scuffing through it. She looked startled for a minute at mom's behaviour and then joined in the fun. We arrived at home with leaves in our shoes and grins on our faces, hand in hand. The first thing she told her father when he got home was "mommy and I ran through the leaves, daddy."
I love the fall.