Autumn is my favorite season.
The maple, basswood, and dogwood reds. The poplar yellow. The oaky browns.
The senses are filled with the last glimpse of summer - the reservation of energy - daring winter to give us its worst.
Squirrels thunder through the leaf litter - scrambling for each acorn. Deer lurk silently - peering through the brush. Chipmunks call incessantly. The last of the migrant birds head south and the locals fatten up on the remaining seeds from the growing season.
The first wood burning stoves are heated. Filling our ravine with a warm, toasty aroma - like a hug from a lumberjack (not a gruff toothless one, but like Paul Bunion without the freaky blue ox shitting everywhere).
Fall is a time for reflection - reverence. Peace.
What the fuck was that? AHH again? DAMN!
Oh, and the Asian lady beetles (aka Japanese ladybugs, aka Pains-in-the-ass) are back. The assault has returned. The continued tainting of the romanticized red-with-black-spots lady bug by it's orange redneck cousin. No longer are lady bugs cherished for their aphid eating, but now sucked up en masse by shop vacs around the region.
Oh, what harm can a little lady bug do?
They are attracted to contrasting colors - like my dark bangs against light forehead. Giving me the perpetual getthefuckoffmyface arm flailing that makes me the lady my grandmother can be proud of. They also land on you (attracted to white or very light clothing). If you smash them, they stain. If you flick them, they stink (emitting an odor that naturally repels predatory birds in their homeland...and apparently here too). If you leave them the hell alone, they BITE. Yes, BITE.
They creep into cracks and crevices in your house (usually along shutters/windows). The jury is still out on the damage that they cause (other than emotional distress, curtain staining, and pet torturing). They overwinter inside walls to emerge on that one January day that the sun's warmth actually breaks through the clouds and into your windows. Then they spring to life - milling around in your sunlight making your dog hack its nasty taste up in the corner.
Nonetheless, I love the sights and smells of Autumn!