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Back in the city again …

Before we became country mice, we were city rats. Garry lived in Boston, downtown in Government Center, for 20 years, then another 10 in Roxbury. I lived in Jerusalem for 9 years, Boston for 3, then Roxbury (which is really part of Boston) for 10 … and then we took our show on the road and moved out here.

It is a bigger different than mere geography. It’s a completely different ambiance, a different texture. Ironically, although the air is cleaner, almost completely free of industrial pollutants, it is thick with pollen and dust. My asthma is far worse out here in the country among the trees and grasses than it ever was in town with the car fumes and chimney soot and all. That, and of course all the dog hair we have in the air and everywhere.

It’s pretty out here. We’ve got the river and the canal, waterfalls everywhere you look. Autumn, when we don’t get rained out, is glorious and you can stop at farm stands and get fresh organic veggies and fruits any time they are in season. We’ve got cows and horses, goats and a dizzying array of wildlife.

Deer, raccoon, the cheekiest chipmunks you’ve ever met … and then there are bats, rats, an infinite number of field mice. A bobcat with glow-in-the-dark eyes and coyotes that look like big friendly dogs. Nasty fishers with coats like mink and when the bobcat hasn’t eaten them all, rabbits. Squirrels, but fewer than there used to be before the bobcats. They are small but mighty hunters.

Irony again: the biggest, nastiest raccoon I ever met was on Beacon Hill, in our back walled garden. He was big, fat, and he wasn’t taking any crap from me. He informed me that the back patio belonged to him and I was disinclined to argue the point.

I never went back there again. At least the raccoons around here stay in their own part of town, or woods.

Early Color

There’s a hint of autumn in the air. Yesterday, we went to friends and barbecued and ate … and I wore sandals and my feet were cold. It’s the beginning. Summer isn’t officially over, but really, it’s over.

We can feel it. The oak trees are shedding. The squirrels are busy.

On the deck, the leaves are starting to pile up. Mostly oak, bronze and a bit of yellow, yet they are starting to fall from the trees and soon we’ll be hip deep in leaves and acorns.

Time to park the cars where falling acorns can’t make dents in the roofs. When the acorns are fat, the winter is usually long and hard. The acorns are very fat this year.

I took some pictures, there and a few more at home. It’s starting. The first hue is gold and some dark reds.

The flowers are gone to seed. A last few straggling roses are trying to bloom one last time.