The orange yellow glow from lights breaking the gray cast on a rainy October day made her feel cozy and safe. Breakfast was already on the table and her feet dangled and swung freely under the chair for they were not quite able to touch the floor. She watched as her mother made lunches for school, and she listened as her two younger siblings chattered away still in their pajamas, for they were too young to be going to school and watched Captain Kangaroo instead.
As she climbed out of the taxi cab her foot hit the wet maple leaves in the parking lot. She walked along the edge of the curb, scuffing up the already beaten down leaves that had been run over with tires and walked on by shoes and she could smell them. She breathed in and loved it.
Climbing the eight granite steps to the school vestibule she saw remnants and pieces of leaves that had escaped from the soles of shoes to remain outside, but as she entered through the heavy green doors she saw one speckled orange and rust and yellow maple leaf on the ground, and she picked it up and put it in her coat pocket.
Six rows of eight desks, placed like soldiers on hardwood floors dressed the classroom. Over head were half as many rods holding milk glass globes illuminating the desks in a soft warm glow. A dreamy glow, the kind of glow that on a gray rainy morning could lull you to sleep, or at least a day dream or two. She loved to daydream, and although she could hold her own in class she was not a scholar, she was a dreamer!
TODAY, she showered and dressed and when she had finished she took her morning drive to the local coffee shop, Dunkin' Donuts to be literal. The wipers played a rhythm on the windshield and she drove back home. It was her usual routine at 6:30 in the morning. The rain had lessened to a soft drizzle and as she let her foot drop out of the car she felt the old familiar squish of wet maple leaves beneath it. She smiled and remembered a long ago school day, and as she closed the car door she stood for a moment letting the drizzle tickle her face and she took a deep breath in, it was the most wonderful fall smell, as she walked to the house she looked up at her kitchen windows illuminating that familiar safe glow! Then she sat down at her desk and turned on the lamp that lulled her into a daydream....
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