Having lived away from the for UK for many years, I have missed the changing of the seasons, something that before, I largely took for granted. In my hometown, Lima, the sun sets at around the same time every day of the year. I can leave home on any day at 6.00 pm, walk a hundred yards to the cliff top sea front and watch the sun magestically, disappear into the Pacific Ocean.
It almost never rains in Lima and summer is pleasantly hot. The winter, although sometimes chilly, is mild, so much so that houses, schools, hospitals etc. do not have central heating installed. The green areas remain with little change thoughout the whole year. Summer turns to winter and winter to summer. Spring and autumn are scarcely noticed.
In contrast, the four seasons in my native England reflect the passing life of the year. The spring is the rebirth when nature comes to life after the bleakness of winter. The months pass and the year grows and matures into adulthood with the rigour of the vibrant summer.
Autumn reflects old age as leaves wither and fall from the trees. Then, with the starkness of winter, we face the death of the year and the trees with bare branches reach up and yield to the sky.
I arrived in England this year just before the recent heatwave. As always, leaving the coastal desert of Peru behind, I was overcome with the view of a thousand shades of green in every open space. I was therefore amazed to see how, within a few weeks, the lush grass could turn brown, parched from the heat and lack of water.
The rain eventually returned with violent thunderstorms and the green areas rapidly returned to their natural vivid colour.
However, I noticed that the leaves of some tree were turning brown and beginning to fall to the ground. Was this a temporary trick of nature or were the trees going through a premature celebration of Autumn? In fact, some trees had already lost nearly all their leaves.
Most of my many trips to England have been during either the winter or summer months, but never during the golden brown days of Autumn. Even now, Autumn has not truly started, and a passing jet reminds me that in a few days, I will be flying away too. However, my mind still goes spinning back to past memories of walking down country lanes with the crisp, yellow and brown leaves crackling under my footsteps. As I mention in my home page …….. wandering and wondering ……. maybe next year!