The Old and the New

Autumn seems to hang on through October, but one day everything will go and the winter will begin, with its bare trees, its wind and rain, and its grey skies.

So it is really important to get out there while the year is still alive and beautifully kicking.

I thought I was going to miss it this year. I am determined to get back the use of my back and leg, but in the meantime I was stuck in the house, effectively and emotionally imprisoned.

I was under house arrest.

My new landscape

My new landscape

But . . . and it is a big but . . . I now have my little blue scooter, and it gives me liberation. My mood has lifted, because I can now go out and explore the world.

The woods are still inaccessible, but the Nature Reserve at Tunnel End is a wonderful new substitute. Here, I am aware of the space and the sky, the longer view than that to which I had become accustomed in the wood.

The colours and birds are new. Pipits and chats dart from cover and weave the sky to the land. Ruby finds new smells, new small animals she can chase, yipping her high-pitched excited call, as she bounds through the thickets and bogs. By the end of a walk she is black, and when we get home I have to corner her in the shower, which she hates.

The trees are still holding their leaves, but the undergrowth has gone black and has gone to seed. Seeds drape the collapsing growth like cobweb shrouds. The colours are so rich. They are the ochres and red-browns of death and conception.



The white fluff is like a death shroud of semen. It is the seeding of the long night, the profligacy of the old.

It is remarkable how wasteful this seeding business is. But it is the same everywhere. Millions of sperm, millions of eggs, released in the sea or on the earth.

And I feel so honoured to witness it. In the greyness of these cold days it gives me proof that things can improve. Spring seems a long way away, but it will come.




About stevehobsonauthor

I am blind, and I hate it. It stinks. But life is still sweet. I have multiple sclerosis, and that stinks too, but life is still sweet. These are my musings.
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2 Responses to The Old and the New

  1. Oh if only you were in Tucson now. Things are all reversed here. It’s still too hot for me, but winter is when everything comes alive and the outdoors are welcoming again. Last week we even got to turn off the air conditioning, it was wonderful. On the other hand, Ruby wouldn’t be able to go off leash out here in the desert. Too many dangerous things.

    Enjoy the weather and try to get outside, even if it’s just to sit and breathe in the wonderful crisp air. I know from living in Vermont that winter can bring cabin fever…so definitely carpe diem! (Vermont reminds me of how wonderful fall can be…I miss that.)

    On winter and finding something to do…it’s hard for dogs too. They get bored when they’re stuck inside. I discovered this wonderful game with Geordie called “find the egg.” I hide a treat in this little stuffed egg, get him to sit and wait (this is the hard part, but he’s getting good) and then yell, “Yay! Find the egg!” It’s really cute to watch him go from room to room. I’ve started hiding weird things, minus the egg. Bottles of exotic spices, a leaf of basil, a pack of cigarettes, a bottle of lotion. I let him sniff these while he’s sitting, then he has to go find them (then he gets a treat, although at this point he hardly needs it since he enjoys the game itself). He used to need lots of hints to find the egg with the treat, but now he usually just goes straight to the object. I’m going to have to up the ante. He absolutely loves the game.

    I’m so glad you have Ruby to help you get through this. Dogs—I don’t even like calling Geordie that—they never cease to amaze me with their wonderful souls.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you so much for this. The winter here is not a bad time – just different, with its own beauties. But it’s still hard to leave the summer behind. Mild, wet winters are not my favourite season, but frost, snow and sunshine is wonderful.


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