Driving the Kancamagus in New Hampshire, in late September, you expect the orange, red, and yellow hues to be vibrant, even neon-like. And there were places where the bright colors showed their faces. The birches stood naked while the plumage of greens and golds and orange flocked around them. The Great White and Green Mountains refused to give into global warming droughts. Their colors might not be as brilliant, but they are not ready to abandon all hope. They cling to the mountainside as if to defy a season plagued with no rain. These mountains have played host to tourists for a millennium, yet that industry was threatened by one single element: the rain and snow or rather the lack of either.
The bubbling brooks and flowing river beds look more like dry gulches after a rain. Puddles and rocks are mostly visible. The waters don’t flow where waterfalls used to cascade, instead they trickle into mud puddles. Gaia (Mother Earth) has not left the planet, although humankind has not treated her well. The emissions of gasoline-powered vehicles still far-exceed those powered from sustainable fuels. We still have more pollution from many other sources. Some people cast doubt on global warming. Our scientific communities have no doubt and proven that it’s real.
But there will be more threats to our world with global warming, strange weather patterns, droughts, and floods. While the environment saw fit to withhold it’s healing waters in New England, it also saw fit to drown some towns in the south. The Polar Caps are melting, especially the Artic. Polar Bears are at stake, and the experts are predicting the oceans will rise, which puts all coastal cities at stake.
I returned to my own parched garden and to see signs that the leaves may actually turn to something other than brown before they drop to the ground. And the cool temperatures were a breath of fresh air, as well as an entire day of moisture — rain was a bit of a stretch, but it was a day of misting. The sidewalks were wet all day, and there were signs that my garden was drinking it all down.
Another Road Less Traveled trip took us to Sudbury, Massachusetts, and to a hidden jewel: the Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge. While the trees in the Refuge had not begun to turn, it was nice to know this area existed. A bus full of children were somewhere on the property exploring the ponds and forest. It was nice to see that these ponds were not dried up. Maybe there was hope for nature after all!