Everything has changed. Well almost everything. New sounds; I’ve never heard that dog bark before. The rumble and back-up beeping of construction equipment is new too. Seems to be road work happening at the top of the hill. A young squirrel is working the oak tree in the neighbors’ yard and there’s a constant drip of acorns plummeting through the leaves and thumping onto the ground.  Seems early for the dropping acorns but the squirrel seems to know more than I do about the matter.

Some birds remain, like the brown thrasher I spent all summer trying to figure out. But the bluebirds are gone, and with them the feeling of early summer. Some new birds sing but I can’t place them. Migrating from someplace to another destination, with a quick stop in my neighborhood. I don’t know birds like I know some other things. But the more I know about anything the less I seem to know about that very thing.  Such is the way of the world.  I’ve learned to respect the journey of self-education, and hate myself for falling into the trap of thinking I know everything about anything.  Worse still is acting so.  Better to be open to the world around you; a sponge not a bullhorn.  There are far too many bullhorns already.

Autumn is in the air. I felt it on Buzzards Bay as the winds shifted. This is first day of school bus stop air, and we aren’t yet halfway through August. And here in New Hampshire with the cool, humid air and white noise background buzz of crickets singing their late summer song.  Getting outside away from media opens the senses and the mind alike.  But other changes are in the air. A quarter of the family flying to London soon state change kind of air.  Another quarter entering senior year in college kind of air.  And what are we doing in this big house with all this stuff kind of air.

Gone for a week and everything is different.  It would have been different if I’d been here too, but the daily gradual change isn’t noticed the way it is when you step away for a bit. Everything changes constantly. And so do I. A little for the better in some ways, a little for the worse in others, but generally more growth than decline. We all know what the ultimate end game is, but that doesn’t mean you have to live like you’re dead already. I know too many people who live in virtual bubble wrap, watching the world pass them by. I want to shake them loose, and whatever cobwebs I’ve grown myself, and shout “Embrace the changes; there’s magic in the air if you’ll only feel it!”

I have a drive to Connecticut to get to.  That drive brings me from New Hampshire through Massachusetts to Connecticut, then the reverse this evening for the drive back.  Four hour round trip drive time, and more like seven hours with meetings thrown in the mix.  I could probably stay overnight in Connecticut, but there are compelling reasons to get back home this week, and so I’ll do the round trip instead.  My state change is both literal and figurative today.  But I do enjoy the journey.