Monday, September 5, 2011

A Cool Windy Ride and the Three Great Things

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Jet black crow in a jade green field
A new-paved cambered downhill curve
Red leaves burning bright in the sumac

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The bad news: I had to wear a jacket on today's ride. The good news: a cold strong north wind made for beautiful skies and clear air this Labor Day, a federal holiday generally devoted to national sloth and the last barbecues of the summer. (I celebrated by sleeping in, crocheting for hours, and taking a nice long ride on Iris.)

Autumn continues to creep ever closer, despite my fervent wishes otherwise. Last night's lows were in the 40s. Hot soup is beginning to sound appealing. Send not to ask for whom the bell tolls - it tolls for summer.

Just out of town, a field of pumpkins is glimpsed through trees.

The long and winding road beckons...

...while a hawk soars overhead.

Amish country. I'm not sure the carriages can even get up to 45. But perhaps that's for the cars.

Cheerfully-painted farm equipment resting in a field.

Don't these clouds look unreal?

And these, dramatic.

Heliopsis and goldenrod are the predominant wildflowers now. Here's a beautiful clump of heliopsis backed by those painterly clouds - a Van Gogh meets the Italian Renaissance moment.

Only a few knapweed remain along the roadsides - the bumblebees were taking full advantage of their sweetness.

I love the fresh green-and-white of birch against that blue sky.

The sumac is starting to hang out its autumn bunting...

...while allergy sufferers everywhere curse the ragweed that covers the land.

A deserted old shed.

Coloured leaves leaning out to admire their own reflection in the black water.

Why did the caterpillar cross the road? So I could take its picture, of course.

A new-mown hayfield with the tractor hard at work in the background. Federal holiday or not, the hay must be got in.

A bouquet of bright birds in the top of a tree. I wish I could have gotten closer to see what they were.

Only a few miles from home now, cloud shadows move over a soybean field.

Most thistles have gone to seed, but these are still blooming strong. Aren't they the prettiest colour?

The ubiquitous goldenrod. They're extremely prolific this year.

A close-up of more heliopsis. So cheerful-looking.

And just before I turn the last corner into town, some pale peachy-gold leaves catch my eye.

A beautiful ride, if chilly. At least I didn't have to wear tights!

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  1. Have been enjoying your bike rides - I wonder if the colorful birds are evening grosbeaks? They have that profile and the colors look right....and grosbeaks travel in flocks....


  2. What glorious countryside you have, I love going along with you on your rides.

  3. Looks like a great ride, lovely scenery! Autumn is coming our way, we've had cold wind and rain on and off all day.

  4. You had to wear a jacket, and I had only one early morning ride all year long without arm warmers. Now I'm back to full-fingered gloves. And like you, no tights... YET! Sometimes it seems summer doesn't last long enough.

    I love your barn. I love your flowers. I love your clouds. And I spotted a few golden leaves over the weekend...

  5. Thanks all! Cecelia - not sure if they're grosbeaks. I checked the Internet and evening grosbeaks all seem to have dark bars on the wings.

    Cedar waxwings?

  6. Another beautiful ride! If it's nice enough here I may go for one on Friday.

  7. It is so incredibly beautiful there!! You make a girl consider moving!! :) Thank you so much for taking pics on your ride!! I've thought of doing the same on my walk....but, I don't know...who wants to see suburbia???? :)


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