Season of mists and yellow reflectiveness

October 27, 2012 at 11:03 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Cycling back from Dawlish in the morning, all red lights and hi-viz, my ears are telling me it’s autumn, with the wind clipping them tight. Headband soon, once it’s dark enough as well as cold enough. The brakes stammer on the cross bike (you’d be cross if you’d been stuck in all year), another thing I was going to sort out if summer had been longer.

Lifting my eyes from tarmac and speed-bumps, there’s a mucky sea beneath the goose-grey sky, and the horizon has pulled itself in a little against the north wind since the weekend.

When I ran on Sunday, the hills were still stretching out to catch the last of summer. The low afternoon sun was glancing across the earth; a warning shot rather than a warming one, skimming stones.

I was exploring. Long Lane was a good place to start, taking me away from the sea and back into beyond. There’s an abandoned car slowly melting in the woods, and it marks where an extra effort leaves the town behind. Further through the trees the chestnuts are hatching among the fallen leaves.

Across the fields, starting the sheep scudding, and I think about the flock that chased me in Newlands at the other end of the year (I’ve got some catch-up writing to do).

Through Pitt Farm and Mowlish, and there’s a village hall with faded bunting, where I didn’t know a village was. The poster tells me that the harvest fair has been and gone, but it’s still an industrious idyll as I run on through stubble, past ploughing and shearing. Later, there are rosehips in the hedgerow as the lanes deepen, ancient ways through banks several centuries taller than me.

I’ve turned now, and above the headland the air is all woodsmoke and seasalt. Across Orchard Lane there’s a sign in Eastdon Woods saying private, and while today I don’t have time to see what it says on the other side, I have plans for the future and there are more runners than me who will be making sure they push it just a little bit harder this next year, just because they can.

And there are eggs to buy on the way home, and stories to tell.

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