The rail services of the West
Country have survived partly for the benefit of summer traffic,
so it is possible to read all sorts of messages into this scene
of a Looe Valley branch train ambling away from Sandplace station
into the golden trees of October. Summer is disappearing from
view, life is quietening down again and soon all will be a peaceful,
if dull, grey until next Spring. (This is particularly the case
for the Looe Valley line, which from the end of October will
be stripped of its Sunday trains until next May.)
But first, before the silence
of winter, we have that last burst of natural excitement as the
trees, realising that leaves just aren't going to be "in"
next season, make a flash about how anxiously they are abandoning
them. And so the bracken goes brown, the brambles turn maroon
and the hillsides flash into a mix of greens and orangles and
yellows before the whole affair sags to match the colour of an
already leaden sky.
And then we have Christmas
to look forward to. But first will come November.