It is nearing the end of October here at Dickinson and the Fall is coming into its own increasingly quickly. Leaves of every color litter the campus grounds, kept somewhat at bay by the dedication of our groundskeepers, but mainly by the powerful leaf blower they each have strapped to their backs. The array of leaves serve as a playground for many woodland organisms, the squirrels especially seem to have taken a shine to a particular pile of leaves situated between Earnest and the North-East corner of Morgan Hall.
On this unassuming afternoon the campus has been rewarded with surprisingly weather. Students and professors alike seem delighted to get one more days-use out of “those nice shorts I have” before they are locked away and forgotten about for 4 miserable months. A pair of freshman boys attempt to attract the attention of several sunbathing girls, however their attempts are either not witnessed or simply ignored…I guess their Frisbee skills were not quite up to par.
The sky is a bright baby blue dotted here and there by a lone cloud, these white wisps of moisture acting like jellyfish of the air. Continuing on from top to bottom; the surrounding trees were going through a tremendous change. Every day more and more little soldiers fall to the ground in aid of the soil/ground quality. As I am thinking about our horrible custom to rake our leaves; Earnest reaches out and gives me a piece of wisdom. A single leaf of his slowly swirls, and twirls, and whirls its way toward the ground making slow arching circles in its decent path. When it at last settles down, on a patch of grass close to my feet, I feel obliged to pick it up.
At first touch it is very fragile, not in a sense that it will crumble but rather that it has no strength/rigidity to its structure. The leaf has a cool feel to it at first. The top side has a dull brown tone which is dotted with dark green/brown spots, while the bottom side has the same spots yet its base color is much paler than the top, almost a creamy brown. However it was the texture of the leaf that captured my attention the most. The topside was extremely smooth while the bottom felt like a light-grade sandpaper.
In all honesty…today Earnest looked a little tired, and very relieved to be receiving all of these rays. He has lost a large majority of his leaves already, a lot faster than some other trees I see around campus, by now he has lost about 70% of his bulk. There have also been some small branches, that Earnest felt he no longer needed, that have been laid at his feet for whoever/whatever desires them. In terms of Earnest himself, he has not changed dramatically from the previous blog, however I am bale to witness much of his change simply by bearing witness to the change going on around him. He is a part of his environment, so when it changes so does he. Regardless of how it may appear.