As we exit the month of October, the stunning showdown in colours all around us is now so very apparent. This is fall flamboyance in all its glory, when trees, shrubs and bushes grow that beautiful attire of copper, gold and fiery red.
It often comes across as a certain theatrical finale - it is as if nature wants to leave us with the best it has got, enabling us to enjoy and savor its final glow, before it becomes infinitely barren, cold, dark and still.
This autumn beauty is very short and intense in my part of the world. At all times it sneaks upon us suddenly and the changes are powerful and fast. Every day more colours are added to our views and it is an endless joy to watch these grow in tint and intensity.
Indeed October is that ornate month, when nature wears its very best, as was truly obvious on our recent walk. It felt as if we were granted one last performance, before the foliage vanishes from the trees, compliments of the late autumn storms, making leaves gather on the ground like discarded party confetti.
When that time comes, then we will truly know that winter is about to begin.
Our Indian Summer, which dominated the onset of this month, feels today only as a distant memory. Yet, it has contributed to a truly delayed colour showdown.
We are thus in the midst of a very short and a very intense turn, which I believe will last only a week at the best. It has been only days since the foliage began showing in all the earthy colours of red, copper and golden.
Below are some long overdue updates on our lovely birch. It has lost almost half of its lovely coat and whatever still adores the branches is golden. By each day, the strong westerly winds, with a force so very palpable in these parts, rob the tree of more of its leaves.
When I stand looking out of our kitchen window these days, I always have to pause, looking at the long branches as they sway in my view, like the mane on a palomino, while the air gets saturated by falling leaves, gathering on the ground in heaps, like golden coins. At all times these natural changes instigate in me a sense of security, as yet again the third season moves forward, as does the yearly circle of the birch.
I have been somewhat absent from my writing here, for which I apologize. The will is there, the time is simply not.
When I left the single life behind a few months back, I left a lot of free time behind as well. Nevertheless, it is a loss I do not miss the least. On the contrary, I have never lived life so intensely as I do now and yet I feel so much has the potential to still unfold.
I find myself currently in a state of content. It is a novel feeling for me. This does not mean that I lack worries or problems, oh, a far cry from that I must admit. As of lately I struggle with our persistently and increasingly declining personal economy, trying to keep two homes, one close to unsellable.
However, it seems not to weight me down too much nor does it keep me sleepless. Why? Because when fears overcome me, I have always a broad shoulder to cry on and strong arms to support me. And a kind, steady voice to reassure me that everything is - and will be - fine. At last I have a man in my life that makes me feel safe, because he is just like me; believing in the same values and seeing life as an endless adventure, one that needs to be lived and savored. He never makes anything into a problem and he makes problems into nothing.
I have realized that in life we never get it all. At least not simultaneously. There is always that last part that needs fixing. I guess that is destiny's way of keeping us on our toes. Giving us something to learn at all times. If we only persist and never loose hope and a positive outlook, the lessons we learn will lead us to places of incredible success.
I have also come to the conclusion recently that we need so little of material possessions in our every day life. I have now lived for months in my new home and all I have brought with me from the white house are some of my clothes and personal belongings. And I miss nothing of my "stuff". Every time I visit the house and see all those items that I have collected over the years, I wonder why I kept so much junk. Why do we do this? Why do we surround us with things we never use? Perhaps it gives us some sort of security, makes us feel connected to our life and to our past. Small trinkets and gifts we do not want to discard due to sentimental reasons, and perhaps the idea that they might come to use at one time. They usually never do.
Do you feel you know yourself?
I thought I did, but honestly, I do not. Sitting here today, recollecting the past year and all that I have done, I have ultimately surprised myself. I have changed so much in such a short time and my priorities have been totally redefined. However, I do not think it is a tragedy at all. On the contrary, I think not knowing what we might be like or want in a few years (maybe even a few months) is what keeps life interesting. It is a sign of an ongoing personal change. To have it all figured out at any time in our life would make for an infinitely boring existence.
Finally, I have decided to pay attention to signs all around me. I have always done so, but I have become infinitely more sensitive to what the universe is trying to tell me, whether I will be ridiculed for this or not. The other day when I was driving from work, consumed by anxious thoughts, I looked out to see an incredible rainbow. I found consolation in its glorious beauty as the arch put my mind to ease.
Thus I am no longer scared of pain or set backs, as I know that after the rain the sun will eventually come out. And during the transition time, the reward for our endurance is a glimpse of an alluring rainbow.
We have now passed mid fall, thus the first frost covers the ground, clearly visible upon daybreak.
This past week, getting ready to hang up new washed laundry in the morning sun, I had to walk onto our lawn, which is now mid calf length - not that we care too much.
The air was still and cool and there was a promise of a beautiful sunny autumn day in store. Areas of grass not heated yet by the sun were covered by multitude of water crystals and beads of frozen dew - a stunning, nevertheless fleeting architecture in ice.
Nature is an endless source of magic. Just a couple of weeks ago, the sense of summer hang in the air, as spiders spun their webs among the slender green straws, covered with brilliant dew. Yet now they are long gone, and the ice in the grass announces in no uncertain terms that the countdown to winter has truly begun.
I have had the most beautiful encounters with the growing moon recently. As some of you might know, I am infinitely fascinated by this natural satellite of the Earth.
This past Saturday evening, as we walked in the fresh autumn air, so saturated with a promise of the first frost, we passed a nearby park. As a clearing came into view, suddenly the moon was just there, right before us, in all its silvery glory, large and heavy lying low over the easterly horizon. Like a lantern in the purple twilight sky, reflecting the sun, which was setting in the opposite cardinal direction.
Holding my lovers hand, feeling his warmth and affection in that one simple touch, I became spellbound by this unforgettable moment, as it etched itself in my memory, preserved forever.
Earlier this week, driving home through heavy showers, upon my final approach, the skies cleared and to my east the same moon was rising. Significantly fuller, it floated occasionally within my views, while the sun kissed it good bye. I felt such an urge to capture its beauty, yet once again had no opportunity to do so, which filled me with remorse.
The next morning, upon my solitary run, as I defied the cold arctic wind, making my way towards the lake, an alluring sight greeted me. The almost full moon was setting in the west, reflected in the rippled waters like a large glowing globe, while the world was waking up to a pastel coloured daybreak. What a reward for venturing into a cold, dark morning. Yet once again, only mental shots were the ones preserving this ethereal beauty.
However, the next evening, as I looked out into a starry night, there was a bright moon shine in my immediate view, beckoning me outside, with camera in my hand. Governing the ebony heavens, positioned high above the ground, in its full phase. Occasionally concealed from view by fast moving clouds, it appeared to be left temporary behind a veil of smoke. Enchanted and magical, as it always is in my perception.
Despite having witnessed its presence in the night sky endless times before, its allure will never seize its hold on me, as I continue my perpetual love affair with this platinum disc in the celestial sphere.
I did not grow up with religious views, nor teachings. To attend church was strictly prohibited in the communist east. I was however baptized in secrecy, as my mothers uncle was a priest and my mom always exhibited a deep sense of beliefs, which became part of my life in an unforced way and felt very natural.
I can not claim thus to be religious, however I do carry a golden cross around my neck, I do pray at times and I believe that there is more between heaven and earth than can be explain by simple natural laws. Despite being a scientist, governed by logical thinking, I am also forced to keep an open mind, thus I see myself as a deeply spiritual being believing in the unseen and the mysterious.
Slightly more than a year ago, I decided to change my life.
Very drastically and basically from one day to another. Being stuck in a reality I did not enjoy and in a relationship that was draining me, I felt deeply unhappy and felt a force rising within me on regular bases, urging me to act. Knowing that waiting around for things to get better was futile, I opted to finish that which was already broken and started anew, jumping into the unknown and foreign, even though I was terrified. I embarked on a journey that took me through the most unbelievable twists and turns of fate, making me feel a broad spectra of emotions - anything from deep devastation and sadness to happiness of indescribable proportions.
Simply, I started to live and simultaneously, very interesting occurrences began to take place in my life, as I have described previously. One of these has been an odd instance of numerology, which continues today still - even in a greater intensity than before - therefore it occupies my thinking, while I am trying to look for answers to this peculiar phenomenon.
I see sequences of numbers. Everywhere and daily.
The sequences wary, but they are there. Every time I gaze at an instrument that displays numbers or time, I see 13:13. Or 22:22. At times 12:34. Often this manifestation becomes very intense if I am worried, anxious or upset about some occurrence in my daily life.
The other day when I was driving home in my old Toyota, I glanced at the display in the panel in front of me. It showed 18:18 18. The first two digits signified time, the last the outside temperature in Celsius. I had to smile and recalled a similar event taking place a few months back, when we drove to Prague to visit my family this past July, when the same sequence was 22.
About twenty minutes later, gazing at the odometer I got to see this; 88988.
It seemed that on that particular day, the number 8 was of significance for me.
My numerous inquiries has led me me to realize that the explanations I seek might be as versatile as trusting this is only a natural statistical phenomenon or the revelation of our subconscious conveying hidden messages to believing that this is indeed a form of communication by someone divine, the angels.
What surprised me mostly during my search was the infinite number of people that seem to be experiencing the same sightings. Hundreds of people out there write about seeing particular sequences as well as seeing random sequences, at different periods in their lives. Even books has been published on this subject and when I mentioned my experiences to my mom this past summer, she read me a passage from one, stating in no uncertain terms that seeing sequences of numbers are the means by which our guardian angles tell us that we are on the right path.
Now, what do I choose to believe.
Perhaps I have been touched by an angel, the one who I have been praying to all those years when I cried myself to sleep. Or perhaps I have just tuned into something that has always been there, gone unnoticed to me before, until my senses became enhanced by life's experiences.
Whatever the explanation might be, one thing is certain - I have never experienced this phenomenon before last year, around the time when I found courage to take leaps of fate. Thus perhaps it is a sign given to me by something divine to trust myself and to trust the path I have chosen in life.
As after all, the result of that change has brought me to heaven on earth.
"Angels are speaking to all of us... some of us are only listening better."
My man has a profession that requires him to routinely spend days, occasionally weeks and once in a while even months (sigh) away from home.
And away from me.
Currently he is away for ten days, the longest time we have been apart since we met and although I dislike this separation with all my being, I decided to stop obsessing about things I can not change and turn them into something positive instead. These departures of his will inevitably become part of my life, as they are a part of his. It is an occurrence that I will have to get used to and accept, because he has chosen this profession, one that he does with dedication and great skill and one that defines who he is.
A courageous man whom I love with all my heart and soul.
Determined to use my time alone the best I could, I opted for a day, an evening and a night on my own again, back at the white house.
My old home these days stands so abandoned and neglected, still for sale, but due to the frozen real estate market light years removed from the possibility of selling - thus it is in a desperate need of love and attention.
Working outside in the warm autumnal weather, bringing my terraces back to their former glory, felt as a vital therapy. Later in the evening, I enjoyed the warmth of the fire, that one single thing that I miss deeply in my new home. Inhaling the scent of burning wood and incense, while watching the fall sun set in my westbound views brought on moments of soothing tranquility and deep relaxation.
Yet, the experience very quickly lost its allure and as soon as darkness enveloped the world, I felt a strong urge to drive back home - as certainly my white house no longer felt as such for me.
Instead, it has become now a residence away from home, a tranquil retreat, one that can bring me seclusion if I ever yearn for it. It can offer a time for me only, a solitude that is unforced and chosen, one that is only temporary - long enough to be enjoyed, but short enough not to feel too impeding.
When I left the house the next morning, it was with a sense of satisfaction, not sadness. Even though I enjoyed this momentary solitude, I knew without a doubt that my life was no longer there and I had no desire whatsoever to retaliate to my old existence again. I would never want to wish it back - it has become my past and my entire being longed passionately to return to my loving present.
I smiled with amusement as I locked the door, glancing back at my former home, pondering that one single fact - despite being currently as poor as a church mouse, I feel as the richest woman in the world.
We are in the midst of an uncanny Indian Summer. Yesterday was the warmest day in October ever measured and indeed our second month of the fall began warmer than our July.
As the sun heats up the air to record breaking temperatures, the nights are nevertheless still cool, giving rise to misty mornings and dew covered ground. Being up early, I literally waded through our overgrown lawn - having not been mowed for over two months, it belongs more appropriately in a jungle than in a garden.
Yet the long grass offered an unexpected surprise. Among the vibrant and juicy green slender leafs, tiny droplets of water shone as if thousands of diamonds were thrown onto the ground. Spread all across the grassy carpet, these reflected the low lying autumn sun like miniature mirrors. It was as if an enchanted being crossed here in a hurry upon day break, leaving behind beads of a broken necklace. Accidentally strewn onto the leafage, some drops got caught up in the silky threads of spider webs - a treasure to find for those who look.
And indeed, what beauty lies hidden between the green straws if we only take the time to notice. Brilliant splendor in the grass, a reward for an early riser and a delightful last kiss of summer as it waves good bye.
I was born under the Tatra Mountains, to a Czech father and a Slovak mother. I grew up in Sweden and lived almost ten years in North Carolina.
More than a decade ago my line of work took me to Denmark, where I live today. My home, which I share with the man that holds my heart, lies in the northerly part of a Danish peninsula, in the proximity of endless, wide and pristine westbound sandy beaches, surrounded by the rough and untamed North Sea.
My writing is defined by reflections on my cosmopolitan past and my intriguing present. Ultimately I try to convey in words and images my personal thoughts and feelings about life itself, with all its magic, natural splendour and the beauty of simple pleasures.