Glorious Fall Color
The following images were taken during mid October of 2001 in the Southern
Appalachian Mountains. Depressed by the sad events of September 11 as
well as talks of anthrax and potential terrorism at home, I decided I needed
some emotional rejuvenation. On the "spur of the moment", I left my home
near Washington D.C. just after a cold front had passed through
and the weather cleared.
The leaves were beginning to turn in my neighborhood,
so I decided to take a ride to
the mountains so I could see the fall foliage.
It would surely be a pleasant change.
My trip lasted four days, but I could have gone for weeks.
I stopped first at Roan Mountain on the border of
Tennessee and North Carolina and then headed down to the Smokies.
Finally I got on the Blue Ridge Parkway at its southern starting point
near Cherokee and drove
all the way to Roanoke Virginia before I got back on Interstate 81 to head for
Before I left, the local news had been swamped with pictures of the war in
and the dry, desolate region in which those unfortunate people live.
Compare the "postcard" scenes I have presented here with images of Afghanistan,
such as those on the website of the
of the Red Cross.
What a contrast!
I drove 1350 miles in those 4 days. I hiked trails and mountain tops
above 6000 feet; I saw incredible vistas that went forever and relaxed
in peaceful valleys surrounded by the brilliant color imaginable.
The entire time I kept saying to myself,
"How fortunate I am to live in America the Beautiful!"