Shades of Autumn

I loved drawing big leaves all over my school art-book. I would then colour them in green, orange, red and yellow.

“The reds and yellows and oranges are for autumn,” I’d tell mom knowledgeably, “You know the leaves turn into those colours before they all turn white in winter!”

It is another story that I never really saw these colours in the trees outside my house in Delhi. They’d sometimes get a muddy yellow at best. This is why, when R and I ventured out for a walk by the Danube the other day, I was in for a glorious surprise.

All the trees around us have metamorphosed into autumnal delights. Their leaves have been painted, presumably by the heavens, into striking colours that look very like the crayon drawings in my old art-book. There are huge scoopfuls of leaves strewn all over the roads, almost like a leafy carpet. It is the proverbial autumn. And if it wasn’t for my jackets and headgear that kind of restrict movement, I would have jumped into the piles of leaves like I have seen some dogs do.

Vienna in AutumnHow is it possible that very soon these colours will disappear? What will be left behind is a sheet of white, thickening everyday as the snow falls harder, and all traces of the vibrant colours of autumn forgotten until the year comes a full circle. It makes me feel transient, vulnerable. The sun sets over the Danube even as I extend my hands to capture some warmth. Little kids run past me in their winter wear; elderly couples hold on to each other’s hands tightly. When they all wake up the next morning, it is likely that most of these beautiful leaves will be strewn on the roads, the colours rapidly disappearing. Everything about our world can be – and most likely, will be – altered by time. All we can do is cherish the happiness of the moment.

So, this is what I have decided to do. Leaving you with two more pictures of the Viennese autumn that I find incredibly beautiful in a searing, melancholic sort of way. Enjoy the dash of colour while it lasts!


18 thoughts on “Shades of Autumn

  1. Near my son’s school there are rows of trees with a blanket of multi-coloured leaves lying at their feet, some side by side and some on top of each other, then some slowly drifting where the wind dictates. Autumn is my most favourite season, as it reminds me of my University days, where I was able to walk, ponder and create. I asked my son that we should pick up some leaves and stick them in a scrap book, for they will soon disappear.
    Those leaves which are so considerate will make way for the snow fall, where once green grass kept warm under the bed those leaves will now remain frozen for a while under the white snow, but it is inevitable that such change must come.
    Have a nice day. D

  2. I had a habit of drawin leaves too, but never coloures them. I left them like that.
    The colours are glorious, really! Isn’t it amazing that the sky has almost the same colours just before sunset? Nature is full of miracles.
    Is it ok if I say I love the sunset pic the most? I’m a little partial to them, especially when they reflect their lovely hues on water. ❤❤

    • Agree with you, Varsh! Nature is indeed full of miracles. We just need to keep our eyes open.
      Haha, I know what you mean. I totally love pictures of the sun too – sunsets, sunrises – they make me feel all fuzzy and warm. 🙂

  3. Dear Deboshree, I’m from Michigan in USA, and I visited Pune last December, which was a dream come true for me. When I got back I googled “I love Pune” and found your blog that way. And now you are writing about the autumn leaves in Vienna! From your pictures it looks like the Viennese leaves look a lot like the Michigan ones!

    When we were kids, we would take two pieces of waxed paper, and arrange a few leaves in a nice pattern, and with a warm iron, we would iron the the two pieces of waxed paper together. That way we saved our leaves, although we would usually give the whole thing to our mothers, who would hang them in the window so the light could come through.

    I don’t know if you even have what we call waxed paper in Vienna. It’s translucent, it’s waxed on both sides, and it’s real use is to wrap up a sandwich for your lunch.

    • Welcome to my place, Kathy! I’m always delighted to hear from anyone who’s been in Pune and caught the vibe of the city I hold closest to my heart.

      Wow, your idea to save the leaves sounds totally amazing! I have never tried doing that – the closest I got was years ago in school when we made scrapbooks of leaves. But that didn’t preserve them for too long. I think I’ll look around for waxed paper and give a shot at this. Thanks for the tip and have a glorious autumn in Michigan!

      Hope to see you around more often 🙂

  4. It is unfortunate that so many people will never witness the sun’s rays hitting a glorious range of Fall colors. Perhaps you could pickup a small collection of leaves and send them to your Mum?

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