On a sunny fall morning that began with cooling temperatures, eight workshop participants under the leadership of Nancy Morgan addressed the issue of cooling off and how it relates to our lives and natural surroundings. Poems by Wendell Berry set the stage for seasonal inspiration, reflection, writing and sharing about personal challenges that might improve with stepping back and cooling off.
After we roamed the landscape searching for lessons in cooling down that nature, our teacher, demonstrates. Collections of leaves and berries, returns to favorite Morven Park haunts and new settings enriched our conversation. We spoke of the equinox as a moment of equal day and night — a perfect balance. The “chill” setting in electric vehicles rewards slower speeds with greater energy, a metaphor for the benefits of cooling off. Magnolia berries, childhood leaf memories, dragonflies and a mysterious nemesis named Otis colored our stories and evoked memories for all.