It is that time of the year — the horse chestnut trees are beginning to change the color of their leaves from green to all the shades of the lower end of the spectrum: reds, oranges, yellows, browns — and floating down the air; There are many news birds here, on their way to warmer climates, and the   marauding monkeys, knowing the corn has ripened, have come here in hoards to have a feast.
When I went for my walk today the path was thick and lovely with fallen leaves. The oblique angle of the sun at this time of the year up here in the high Himalayas has a particular brightness edged with dark. One feels the light in ones bones and the body, like the trees, begins to sense the coming of winter, of darkness and cold. By the end of October the sun will cease for three months to shine on our home and the temperatures will plummet to below zero. I have been here at that time of the year, freezing, dark, depressing.  

The time of year is particularly poignant for me, for it is reminder that I am leaving this life that I love so much to go off to Southern California, which I also kind of love, though I miss several things about this place, my dogs (who I know will be very well taken care of by our chawkidar, Himmat, and his wife, Meera; I have them move into the house where there is a German wood stove and plenty of firewood for the winter), all the help that makes my life so easy, my family who are so close (eight hours away by car instead of thirty by plane), and the jungle/nature surrounding me here. There we have the Pacific Ocean which kind of makes up for it.

There is much to do before we batten down the hatches and leave for the season. It hurts my head to count the many ways. Payson and I do some hopping before returning to the US — first to Chandigarh, then Delhi, then Ajanta and Ellora — neither of us has been. I won’t have internet now till the first week of November. But will write some more posts before I leave here.

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