This morning, as I slogged down our gravel road, I could only think of one word to describe the weather on my first full day back in Iowa.
The road was mushy, pot-holed and slippery, unable to absorb all the rain we’ve received. Lawns were strewn with a mushy, sodden carpet of leaves.
The muscles in my legs were mushy, out of shape and useless as I climbed the steep hill beyond the bridge.
The damp in the air made my clothes so mushy and heavy they clung to me, smothering my skin.
My mind felt mushy, overwhelmed by the piles of bills, an overflowing email inbox, thank you notes to write, and books to send after my walk was over.
Then the cold wind, egged along by all I need to do in too little time, pushed against my heart and I wanted to go home and crawl back in bed instead of tackling the demands of today, my spirits turned mushy, too.
Mushy and mopey, I walked by a burning bush, brilliant in spite of the gloom and flanked by a yellow maple tree bright as the sun. The day was as mushy as ever, but glowing colors warmed me. They burned off the gloom, and evaporated the dampness in my heart. I walked home, full of purpose. My mind was sharp with red and yellow foliage, challenged by its brilliant refusal to surrender to the mushiness of this gloomy, cold October.
Time to get to work.