Autumn is definitely my favourite season. There’s so much potential in the colours, and everything’s so fleeting. There’s that beautiful moment of calm before Winter sets in.
In Malta, Autumn doesn’t really exist. The trees have no need to shed their leaves to protect their chlorophyll from frost (the temperature very rarely drops below 5 degrees Celcius), so there’s no great change to their faces. The leaves remain green all year round. So, as you can imagine I was thrilled to indulge in a little Autumn trip to the UK, back to my hometown of Burton on Trent, which just so happens to sit within the National Forest.
The beautiful Autumn day and scenery I was hoping for seemed to disembark with me off the plane. Mid-October, blue skies, a mild breeze and not a cloud in the sky! This was not the UK I remember. (Little did I know that my good fortune was to only last a day, but thankfully, the first of my holiday).
So it was time to head off with my twin sister/photographer in chief and mother down to the beautiful riverbank and Stapenhill Gardens, which pretty much divides the little town in half.
The sky kept us pleasingly warm, and I was able to wander around and enjoy the rustling of the trees’ jackets, the crunch of the golden leaves underfoot, and of course, the deep, mechanical honking of the fifty of so Canada Geese that accompanied us.
Driving through the outskirts of the town, there are many beautiful villages that I don’t know the names of, mostly because I never paid attention to them before. There are subtle winding roads lined with weeping willows, massive oaks and all the hues from ochre through to the deepest toffees and browns.
Everywhere, trees seem to provide a barrier between the roadside and the houses beyond. The houses here too have that feeling of quaint English countryside: the dark rough-cut bricks and sloping roofs, pregnant bay windows and immaculately tended lawns.
Meanwhile, back in Malta and things are pretty much the same as ever. Trees are in short supply, and the ones that are here are still green with the envy of Autumn. A balmy 26 degrees, a failed hailstorm and it doesn’t look like Autumn temperatures are coming any time soon. After the four remaining days of my UK trip turned into gales, rain coming in horizontally and a bitter bite in the air, I should be thankful. But I miss the Autumn. I miss that intimate contact with nature, the feeling of being in synch with the seasons, watching the passage of time. I wonder if in Malta sometimes things stand still.
The artist’s mother (keeping out of the way of the geese I suspect)
Expect to see plenty of Autumn goodies on the easel in the coming days. I’ve got plenty of new photographs, fresh eyes and a brand new camera phone to help me out!
For some truly awesome Autumn photos, and photos for any season, check out greyfeatherphotography.com.
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