We have arrived at the time of year when the leaves have turned and fallen into shades of orange and brown across the road, and the leaf-blowers are out in force, their eager thrum and buzz filling the senses too early for the senses to know what they are, and the roads are choked with leaves, branches and inside-out umbrellas.
People prepare for pageants and the influx of relatives and neighbours and lord knows who else might come a-knocking, and a lady we know, who walks the village every day in white gloves, pastel anorak and dark glasses, called me out from my house the other day.
She waved and asked after my dogs and had me walk out onto the road with her. We came to a halt, and she pointed down the road to a halo of leaves the colour of sunset stretching from one side of the road to the other and she said, “Isn’t this Jolly?” she smiled. “Aren’t we lucky?”
An important point, which might have been lost on me entirely, but now I have looked, and I have seen and I know.
We are lucky.