Dec. 7th, 2005

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‘Tis the season

Nise's Notes
By Denise Schoppe

The Marlin Democrat
December 7, 2004


It’s fairly well known that in Texas, we really don’t have four distinct seasons. There is summer, which is unmistakable. Spring is marked with turbulant weather. Winter comes in short spurts of cold air that hang around for a day or two and then warm back up. Fall is a somewhat foreign idea to Texans.

This year, while its hard to say we’ve had Fall, things have been a little bit different. The trees have color.

Maybe two weeks ago, I started to notice something different about the scenery. Last week, I finally put my finger on it. The trees are colorful and breathtaking to look at it.

Now, I have to admit, these brilliant colors come much like our cold weather: in spurts. Traveling down the highway, there are long lines of the usual green and brown leaves that we have every “Fall.” However, out of nowhere, a patch of beautfiul red, orange and yellow will make an appearance.

There is one house along my route to work that is especially noteworthy, as it has one tree of solid red, another of bright yellow, and a third of deep orange — all in the front yard. It takes me take a second look every time and marvel at its beauty.

Nature, the same nature that brought disaster this summer, has brough a new and wonderful pallete of color to the landscape.

Go out of a short drive just before sunset, when the sunlight is at that perfect level of intensity to bathe everything in a cross of pink and orange hues, and the already brilliant trees become more beautiful. At that time, colors that popped out seem to virtually explode with color.

I am sure there are those that live in areas that do get the four distinct seasons that would find my fascination with these changing leaves amusing. In that, though, it is almost a pleasure to me that this kind of Fall-like event rarely occurs at this level. Because of its rarity, there is a deeper appreciation for its beauty.

Now, as our version of winter progresses, the leaves drop off of all the trees and the limbs grow baren. Despite the need to go outside and rake up the leaves, the sudden lack of leaves, too, has its own beauty to be appreciated. It is highly unlikely that we will have white Christmas, but we will enjoy our twinkling lights and figurines of deer, snowmen and Santa just the same.

Winter will, undoubtly, come in spurts again. We will have days of “bitter cold” temperatures followed by days of almost spring-like weather. That’s just Central Texas. It’s what we are all used to having happen. It’s why we appreciate the moments of something a little different — like the changing leaves.

We can never be sure of what nature has in store for us. The best we can do is be prepared for the worst and marvel at it at its best.

Either way, hopefully we respect it and appreciate it.

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