As I take those first purposeful steps from my back door during Autumn, I'm often stopped dead in my tracks by the blaze of colour from a little shrub.
Its name escapes me but I know its from the sumac genus and 'sumac' traces its etymology from the medieval latin word 'sumach' which means 'red'.
For a few seconds it can fool your eyes with the impression of a fire and draw your gaze like those enticing log fires spent in the hearth, warming hands as a child. Inviting a peaceful mesmerizing stare into it.
Each leaf like a flickering flame of red or gold that symbolizes a uncustomary welcome of change.
The sumac provides me with that last flurry of colour, reminding me that the gardens visual rewards are what makes those cold days scratching around with a fork during those cold wet months worthwhile. A reminder that the colour of summer has gone and the long drawn out winter awaits us. Its sometimes difficult to envisage a treasure trove of abundant colour from the wet and dirty almost barren garden during the the autumn/winter seasons.
And in that momentary lapse of reality I'm drawn to thoughts of the red fins of perch, rudd and roach which await the more weather hardy angler that makes the effort of venturing out during the more inclement seasons. The sharp contrast of each trinket of treasure rewarding the angler visually against the grey skies and the drab backdrop of the surrounding scenery.
As well as ensuring interludes between the monotonous humdrum of work its often peaceful too, not encountering a soul on a stretch of water. The absence of fair weather fisherman who have hung their rods away to gather cobwebs and dust in the shed. Providing more freedom to roam and explore unhindered.
It provoked enough incentive to venture out with light trotting gear to practice my techniques and to restore some much needed tranquility. Away from tiresome work and troublesome maladies.
Is it credible or even plausible to welcome this period of transition even though I hate change. The not knowing whats round the corner but the familiarity of the unexpected welcomed equally.
I suspect it not the only change that beckons and anticipate more thoughts and contemplation.
The reminder also, that my own fire still burns eagerly within me with just as much enthusiasm and eagerness, but now fueled with the damp kindling of the encumberment of everyday life.