It’s beautiful in Iowa right now.
I wish you could see it.
The reason fall is my favorite season has everything to do with the state I live in. I was raised on the Mississippi river, and all along the bluffs of the river valley would be a wide variety of trees, each one with their individual markings and genetic tendencies. It would wash the scenery with colors of red, yellow and orange, with the fading green leaves soon giving up the spotlight entirely to its more illustrious counterparts.
When I lived there last, I’d often drive to work on the river roads for both Iowa and Illinois just to get a peek at the trees, even though the route was longer.
The farmers are doing their part too, plucking the land of its final fruits, kicking up a dusty fog in the process. Their work lasts past sundown, so the floating dust gives the rolling farm fields a weird Children of the Corn vibe.
That’s the only pisser; the days are getting shorter.
You want to rock this kind of weather for all you can, because you know the onslaught of grey and cold is near.
The season also reminds me that I’m a year older. I’m thankful for the next year because my children provided life with a bunch of new adventures.
But on the day of my birth, I didn’t get a call from my parents. So I do what I normally do in situations where I feel hurt: I pouted.
The week before I tentatively planned to drive over to Des Moines for a late-season round of golf-thinking that we’d plan the particulars during the obligatory birthday phone call from the parents.
It never came.
And as most Swedes are apt to do, I kept it in. When I saw them last night for dinner, my birthday gift delivered late because of the physical distance between us.
It was a pair of Izod shirts that I’ll more than likely never wear, a golf-club cover with my university’s logo on it, and a vinyl copy of Chet Atkins with Les Paul called Chester and Lester.
Who knows why this particular record was chosen. My guess is that my Dad watched the Les Paul documentary recently and decided that I needed to learn more about these artists. My parents have every single premium channel on their DirecTV line-up because they haven’t invested the time necessary to call the company and have them remove these channels that are well past their free, “trial” period.
As a result, my father manages to record all of these movies, and he’s been telling about this Les Paul documentary for at lease two or three family dinners.
Regardless of the idea for the gift, it’s one that I’ll actually end up using.