Sunday 3 October 2010
I think that the changing of seasons unites the paths I have taken through the years of my life. For example, I remember when certain events took place only because I know what colour the leaves were.
Even as a seven-year old I loved autumn!
I also loved to draw and to write, I even got red ticks. It may be just a coincidence but there are more autumnal pictures in the collection of my drawings that I found after my Mum died than from the other seasons.
There are a couple of early examples of my "Nature Watch" above. Horse chestnuts are still a favourite of mine. Each autumn there will be a few conkers in all my coat pockets. The "G" beside the tick on my work does not mean "good." Although for years I thought it did! It is the teacher's initial; something that I fortunately realised only later in life.
The photographs are taken along my route to work through Knoblauchsland. Everyday on my bike I pass through the perfect tunnels of sycamore, alder and hawthorn and notice the old man's beard and rosehips that brighten the already autumnal way.
Soon, during the next few weeks, things will change. First I will feel the need for a thicker jacket and proper gloves with fingers. Then the first frosts of November will empty the trees of their leaves, they will fall damp and slippery on the cycle path causing me to take more care. I will ride through the colder air with my cheeks red and stinging, once more I will be able to see my breath before me. Later I will realise that I need to puff warm air into my gloves and wiggle my toes in an attempt to assist in the warming of my extremities.
The transformation to winter is nice, but I do not look forward quite so much to the day when my bike goes in the cellar for its winter break. Although with that break comes another welcome change, I will wear "normal" clothes for a few months, long winter coat, knee high boots and hats instead of a helmet.
Seasons change, lives change, a country changes
Today is the twentieth anniversary of the unification of East and West Germany. In the opinion polls mentioned in the weekend papers there is not much difference in the numbers from east or west who think that unification has improved their lives, around 85% are still in favour!
The youngsters who will be taking their leaving exams at the end of this school year are the first generation who were not born when Germany still had an east and a west, or when Berlin was divided into four. They, like all future generations, learn about this recent history from their new text books. History changes too.
Conduction is changing world wide and conduction is changing nearer to home. There are changes that are reassuring like those of the seasons. Changes that are familiar and welcome. Autumn brings with it the warm colours and ripe fruit, children learn how to play with a friend, to sing and to take steps upwards and onwards we even hope for new members of staff.
It is twenty years since the unification of Germany, it is also just about the same number of years since Konduktiv Förderung arrived here in Germany. Could it be that the country is getting used to both at about the same speed?
Changes are happening, perhaps we should be happy with that and not rush things too much, just take one step at a time.
I am now off to enjoy the sun on the balcony. A cooler and lower sun than in summer. A sun that can now filter through the thinning leaves.