(Magnolia seed pods)
The day is muted. A soft gray veil diffuses the sun's light giving today a lazy feel. A glimpse of days to come. Days that are set to arrive at month's end.
Autumn has been inhabiting my mind a lot lately. Today reminds me of an autumn day. Almost like a gift to tide me over until the Equinox arrives on the 23rd. I decided to take the short drive over to the produce stand. Just another way to make today feel like a cool Fall day. It is cool outside. Cooler than it has been in quite awhile. Another sign of the impending seasonal shift. When I walked out the front door, I noticed that the seed pods on the magnolia tree (there are magnolias all over the condos) were maturing. Bright red seeds were being pushed out of the drying pods. I was ecstatic to find that the squirrels and birds hadn't started their usual looting and pillaging. A couple of nearly mature pods were within my reach, so I harvested them. I plan to try and get a few more of them later as I want to let them fully dry so I can use them in an arrangement of some kind. After I stowed the pods away, I headed out.
Since today is Friday, I figured that the stand might be brimming with stuff in preparation for the busy weekend (it gets really busy, especially on Saturday). It seemed that I was right. There were small bright orange pie pumpkins, and some of the biggest squash and gourds I have ever seen in big bins in front. One particular gourd (?) I had never seen before. The gray outer flesh was bumpy and dimpled. It made me think of elephant skin, for some reason. Inside the small cinder-block building, squash continued with what looked to be a couple of cousins to acorn squash. Ever since I was a child, I have never liked acorn squash. I love other types (butternut, especially), but acorn squash has remained repugnant. My mother would bake it in the oven with lots of butter and brown sugar in it. My theory was that it must not taste very good if you have to put all that butter and brown sugar in it. Kids...
(Corn stalks and dry cotton)
They had tall green corn stalks tied together in bunches next to dried cotton bushes, the big white puffs of unharvested cotton popping out of brown husks on the gnarled and dry twig branches. The autumnal goodies examined, I moved on to the other veggies. I left with white potatoes, green beans, mushrooms, and bananas (I am on a banana kick right now). On my way home I decided to stop at the corner store and satisfy my current addiction. A tall and icy frozen coke.
Today has been a good day...autumn is definitely near...
(Dry cotton and pie pumpkins)