The Autumn Leaves

ImageThis is my first fall in the United States since 2008. I now fondly look back on my Japanese autumns. I recall going out into nature to look at the kouyou, or fall colors. It is one of my favorite customs of my former host country. I remember zooming down Mt. Tenzan on my bicycle through a bright array of hues and reminisce about walking through Kyoto with Ashley. I re-live strolling through Arashiyama’s illuminated bamboo forest with Hiromi. Japan is transcendently beautiful in the fall, and there is no better way to enjoy it than with true friends.

I am a little homesick for my former home. Nothing makes me miss Japan like fall–except for spring. Fortunately, I live in Michigan, which is also lovely this time of year. The Great Lakes State is rife with trees, all bursting with vibrant color. It occurs to me that although I am re-patriated, I need not abandon my custom of enjoying seasonal scenery.

Here are a few ways I wish to enjoy the autumn leaves this year in the Mitten. (Yes, cue the Nat King Cole, please).

  1. The first is easily overlooked; just take a minute to take a look around now and again. The change in seasons is everywhere to enjoy. (Check!)
  2. Tahquamenon Falls, Paradise, MI (No joke): Sadly, this one is not going to happen. According to Google, it’s at least a 9 hour drive. And that is if I do not get lost. If you can get there, please enjoy them for me.
  3. ArtPrize/Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI: Accomplished! Blog to follow.
  4. Southern Michigan Railroad Society’s Fall Colors Tour, Clinton, MI to Tecumseh, MI (or vice-versa): Operating just a handful of days in October, take a 90 mile ride through the countryside viewing sights on the National Registry of Historical Places list.
  5. Fall Kayaking, Port Austin, MI: Kayak by Michigan’s thumb enjoying the fall views. Further, Port Austin has interesting rock formations to kayak around. I would like to try this sometime.
  6. Franklin Cider Mill, Franklin, MI: The very, very best way to enjoy the fall.

I hope you are all enjoying this season. How are you taking in the change of backdrop?


About cjn56

World traveler, guitarista/ukulele-enthusiast, composer, wearer of many hats–both figuratively and literally.
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