It's autumn at it's best: we're driving along the I-90 in upstate New York on a warm October day. Skirting the Finger Lakes, continuing east along the Mohawk River, across the Hudson at Albany and onto the Massachusetts Turnpike, through the Berkshire Hills and then gradually downhill to Boston and the ocean.
The mantle of tree cover seems to go on forever. To the north in the Adirondacks; to the south, the Catskills. A perfect fall day. October 20 and the sun in the northeastern United States is warmer than usual for this time of year. The trees show their many colours: reds, yellows, gold and still much green. The land rises and falls; we climb hills and dip into valleys; cross rivers and pass sloping farmland; and everywhere the trees frame the landscape in a gigantic quilt. It almost looks like this blanket was placed over the country by an invisible hand, to protect the land, or maybe to dress it for presentation.
Our destination is Cambridge and we arrive in mid-afternoon. Hundreds of people strolling; it's Harvard on regatta day on the Charles River. Parks full of people of all ages. Harvard's football team is playing at home vs Princeton; the college spirit is alive and well.
Later the Boston Red Sox lift the city's spirits as they beat the Cleveland Indians in a do-or-die playoff game, and the cheers from the bars spill onto the streets under a clear moon.