This morning, I woke up to the sight of a square of sunbeam that had painted itself perfectly in the middle of my pillow. Weak winter sun is a less obtrusive, and far more welcome wakeup call than the radio.
The European holly bushes out by the front of the house have already been in bloom since mid-October, but today, the fire-engine red, fat-and-firm-with-water berries nesting in the glossy and serrated dark green leaves are rimmed with hints of frost. Their colour and rotoundity put the dirty orange berries of our neighbouring pyracantha bushes to shame.
There is a chill in the air, and every breath is wreathed in a plume of steam. My footsteps crunch on the grass, which is also dusted white with frost. There is a serenity and calm that winter’s first cold brings that I am reluctant to shatter with words.
Mother Nature has been doing this metamorphosis of seasons for millions of years, but we have been witnessing her tireless and detailed transformations for just a fraction of that time. That is truly a humbling thought.
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