With my man temporarily housed in a rehab facility in Sandpoint after his recent surgery Iím making a daily drive I donít ordinarily travel. The 22 miles between Priest River and Sandpoint have got to be a secret undisclosed to most of the world.
Honestly, itís so beautiful right now I have a hard time focusing on the road. I visualize the broad sweep of pines ó spreading far as eye can see ó being rather smug, thinking they get to keep their greenery year around.
Someone has to inform them come autumn they act as mere backdrop, a stage curtain, for what I call the Colorful Ones.
That brilliant red maple near the lumber mill in Laclede is an eye popper. And thereís an aisle of highway so encased in shimmering gold leaves it feels royal just passing through. One outcropping along the rock cuts has a single yellow bush blooming, like a brooch pinned to its lapel.
Orange isnít about to wait in line, either. It elbows in anywhere needing more drama.
The whole autumn fanfare sounds to me like a blast of brass ó horns and trumpets and trombones and tubas in a glorious burst of voice.
In this great seasonal celebration I hear another voice ó that of the Creator who set it in motion.
Sure, you can say itís all about the chlorophyll. The shortened daylight, the cooler temps. The leaves losing their appetite, no longer absorbing energy from the sun to feed the plant. The green chlorophyll pigment breaking down and disappearing, allowing the remaining two pigments their brief hurrah before the demise of the leaf.
Science, always a systematic reason for the season.
But whose idea is autumn? Who planned the details? Who gave science its research notes? These questions have circled the ages. And for me come round to one source.
From the Bible emerges this wisdom, ďStand and consider the wonders of God Ö the wonders of one perfect in knowledge.Ē Venture on Highway 2 ó that scenic little stretch between Priest River and Sandpoint ó in peak fall color. Take your time. Be a leaf gawker.
Just donít get so mesmerized by the wonders of God you forget to watch the road.