Not long ago, I abandoned the city to return to the peace of the countryside for a few hours, again, as I used to do. I went to the valley, opened to the noonday, green and yellow, surrounded by hills and cupped by a cloudy sky, and at times carpeted with red poppies or sprinkled with motley daisies.
It was late summer, giving way to the fall. The sun had burned the chaff and the fox-tail on the ground surface and had turned the fallen leaves brown. But in the air, the breeze carried a mild scent of the camamille herb. As I walked, I listened to the sounds and observed the scenes around me. Pebbles creaked as I stepped on the dry sand trail, leaving behind a cloud of dust that rose some inches above the ground, whirled and then vanished without a trace. Salamanders ran on-and-off along the edges of the path. Grasshoppers surged from anywhere in crazy leaps and clumsy flight, and absurdly fluttered their green, blue and orange wings and busied themselves performing endless up and down hops, with no clue for the North or the South. And why one would need north or south, I thought, to enjoy a few hours in the countryside?
And as I kept on moving, I observed the zigzagging of little butterflies that rested on a leaf or a rock by the trail only to quickly restart their crazy flight. And sometimes I paused to hear the twitters from the birds, as if saying goodbye to the summertime. And around each bend, some trees showed their particular print. Here there was the quiet valley oak with its dark-green tonal look, humble tree firmly rooted into the soil. Further away, somewhat remote, the eucalyptus stood, showing a naked trunk like a bather at a nudist beach. And one could also see the happy pine and occasionally, a fig or a magnolia tree.
Plots of the countryside filled with surprises, pulsations, voices, and scenes, where to wander is also to reflect.