Most of my life in Pakistan, autumn has been a sensitive topic. My Mom would come up with:
“You call this autumn? You haven’t seen anything!” telling me about the autumn in her school in Darjeeling, India. The way she kept on talking about those autumn trees, she made me feel as if it was my fault that I’ve not seen a decent autumn. Then she’d say, “I’d love you to paint it.” Now, how can I paint something that I haven’t seen? I kept wondering, how can autumn be that good? Perhaps, with time, one’s memory can get a bit exaggerated.
Now, I’ve found out, it doesn’t.
I did see some interesting autumns in bits and pieces in Islamabad. How could leaves get so bright, as mentioned by my mother?
When I reached Duvall, near Seattle in , on November 14th, l2007l, all I heard was “you missed the fall!” I kept thinking: “So what?”
This time I found out, it is absolutely awesome here. I’ve never seen an autumn like this in my life. Seattle is in any case a beautiful place. I’ve seen its amazing spring which is out of this world. Now, I’ve seen its autumn, and found out how truly beautiful these changing colors of leaves can be.
Coming in early September this year, I’ve seen the whole process. There are more reds, oranges and maroons here than anywhere else, that I’ve seen. Of course the bright yellows of the maple trees, and then the reds also of another type of maple trees give one a touch of the unreal. The bushes which are a deep green turn into bright crimson, it is all quite breathtaking. These flaming colors contrasting with the bright green grass and deep green pine trees make an amazing color scheme. Then, the bright blue skies, and the deep blue of the lakes and ocean nearby highlighted with the dazzling sunlight, it is all quite magical.
Words cannot say it all. So, I’ll leave you to Nataliya’s photographic skills. Just sit and forget everything to look at these pictures. Do note, that the first picture of this article with the rainbow is taken by Ahmad Bilal.
Now, coming to the end of this season, as the Halloween is getting near, the bright and multi-colored pumpkins are everywhere. In all my life, I’ve never seen bright orange colored pumpkins growing in fields as I’ve seen here. So awesome – they look fake! Combined with this are the pumpkin dishes found in every store, yesterday I saw bottles of ‘pumpkin butter’, a few days ago I had pumpkin patties, last time I made pumpkin bread. In Pakistan, pumpkins are a pale yellow hue from which I’ve had tasty ‘pethay ka halwa’ made in Pindi Gheb area. I’ve often made the ‘halva’ or sweet dish myself. But that is all. Here it’s a whole range of foods and types of pumpkins to behold and have.
It feels as if Halloween is just an excuse to celebrate this colorful season to be enjoyed while it still lasts.