Sunday, October 25, 2015
What Celebrating Fall Looks Like in the Tropics, or a Peek into the Fun We Have Pretending
I think L.M. Montgomery said it best when she penned Anne Shirley's famous words, "I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers."
Living in a tropical climate changes that sentiment a bit, but I've come to enjoy Octobers here in our part of the world, too.
Very few of our trees change colors or loose their leaves, but the almond tree does.
It's over sized, leathery leaves change from green to orange to red to brown and then drop from the trees in a span of about two weeks.
We have a favorite road on the University property that is lined with almond trees, so we drive the road as much as possible during our short "Fall."
For just a few seconds, the heart is cheered with the beauty of it all.
We stop by the roadside, and I clip a bunch of flowers that bring to mind black-eyes Susans or my favorite daisies.
They perch happily on my table for a few days.
When they begin to wilt, I clip their heads and set them in the sun to dry.
Maybe I can get some to grow in my own flower pots.
We fill our clay bowl with our special "African" acorns.
These acorns were collected on our last furlough, packed in our luggage, and brought all the way home to be used for Fall decorations.
We painted some with metallic paint, we covered some with glitter, and we filled some of the extra caps with African beads ~ a bit of both our worlds mixed together.
We pull out our Autumn books, each one telling a story of pumpkins, or Autumn, or harvest.
I change the quote on my chalkboard, and though this quote doesn't have quite the same meaning as it might to someone in the Northern Hemisphere, its sentiment is still true here.
We are in a lovely time of weather with storms bringing rain at night and sunny skies during the day, but without the scorching heat that will come with the dry season.
Our "corn man," as Lili calls him, stands guard over the ever important candle that invokes the smells of the season.
The jars are filled with treasures that are usually hidden in the holiday trunk ~ pine cones from Grampa's property, fake acorns, and silk leaves.
The girls are planning out and beginning work on far-away-family gifts.
They must be done and sent out quite early in November if they are going to reach loved ones in time for Christmas.
The girls ask if they can go camping, and of course, I agree.
A sheet hung between bunks is their tent, a blue piece of cloth is their stream, a rechargeable lamp with red, yellow, and orange felt piled around it is their camp fire, and the leaves, cones, and acorns are strewn about the floor.
While Daddy is away, we take some time to paint pumpkins and color leaf pictures.
We hope it fit in a time to make scarecrows now that Daddy is back.
The wind blows, the curtains ghost in the wind, and the sound and smell of rain cool and scent the night air.
We do our chores, and we go to school.
We work hard, but we play hard, too.
We make a batch of fatballs, because they are in our book we are reading for school, and we must find out if they are as tasty as the children in our story thought they were.
The sun streams in every window.
We soak up the beauty that is October in Ghana, and we pretend for just a few weeks, that Fall has joined us here.