After last week's weather that made me want to run away to someplace warm and sunny, today the Mid-Ohio Valley redeemed itself with one of its utterly lovely, in-between-fall-and-winter days. There are no pictures because I was driving a 94-year-old aunt home from Dayton, where we had spent the holidays with a configuration of relatives that included my year-old step-great-grandson (of whom there are LOTS of pictures, but that would be for a different sort of blog), so all I can do is describe the perfection.
The sky was the clear, glorious blue that seems most common after a cold snap (or maybe I just appreciate it more after a series of gray days have left me wondering if we'll ever have sun again--and as far as I'm concerned, two gray days constitute a series). The farm ponds along Route 35 in south-central Ohio were reflecting all that gloriousness. Some were still partly skimmed with ice, and some fields still sported a little snow cover. There were hawks on fenceposts every mile or so.
Moving back into southeastern Ohio, we got to enjoy the hillsides doing their late-autumn thing. Little bluestem lit up anyplace a sunbeam hit, and the dried blooms and seedheads of staghorn sumac absolutely blazed red. The sycamores have finally lost all their leaves, so there was nothing to distract from the eye-popping whiteness of their bark. Pines provided a green break from all the browns, grays, and russets. There was just enough wind for the sun to be setting off sparks in the Ohio River, and the Hocking River was boasting ducks, geese, and at least one blue heron.
Maybe the tropics are over-rated.