In Hancock County, Maine
October in Down East Maine can be viewed as a three-act play. The theme of the First Act always is the peaking of foliage. The blueberry fields turn to scarlet at about the same time as the deciduous leaves send up gold, yellow, and red flares among the evergreens. In some places and at some times, the blue sky, multicolored woods, and the burnished berry fields appear to be braided together. That effect can be startlingly splendid.
There always are standout individual performers, including some that seem to be pointed out officially.
October’s Second Act contains the poignant scenes after the foliage has peaked.
The warm-cool breezes at the beginning of the month turn to chilly-cold winds in late October; morning fog is more frequent; much-needed rain arrives, sometimes in slashing sheets.
Winter is nearing; its breath can be felt.
The trees put up a fight in rain and sun, but they're doomed; the colors begin to stir, then disappear, one spiraling leaf after another.
Gradually, fruits previously nestled within leafy branches become isolated orbs in a fast-graying universe.
Many boats are put "on the hard"; sun pours through new skylights in the canopies of woods of mixed deciduous and conifer trees.
As the Second Act ends, Chokecherry, Bittersweet, and other berries are left standing exposed.
October’s plot turns darker in Act Three. As the once-vibrant leaves die, there is a macabre celebration of evil and dead spirits. (Scare contests such as that hosted by Mainescape in Blue Hill feature witches and skeletons; Jack-o-lanterns, originated to ward off such spirits, appear on porches.)
This year, October's play ends with a unique encore: the spirits of two Presidential candidates come to haunt us at the Brooklin Inn.
For larger versions of the above images, as well as additional images of October moments that we wish to remember, click on the link below. (We recommend that your initial viewing be in full-screen mode, which can be achieved by clicking on the Slideshow [>] icon above the featured image in the gallery to which the link will take you.) Here’s the link for to the full October virtual tour:
Barbara and Dick