Saturday 15 November 2014

An Indulgence

Autumn's in full swing and winter will soon be upon us.

Early in September the leaves were beginning to turn brown and from this lime tree.....

Lime Tree - Victoria Park, 4 September
 ...... the leaves began to fall.  I kept my eye on one falling leaf and voila! I got my photo of a freshly fallen lime leaf.

The biggest leaf in the centre, the freshly fallen.  One lime leaf down but not out because next spring,  young green leaves will take its place.

Came October and November and the trees in the Park kept on giving up their leaves.  This year, instead of scrunching them under my shoes, I decided to pick the leaves and take them home instead.

An assortment of autumn leaves from Victoria Park

Maple leaves, at various stages of turning to autumn.

The oak seems to get "browned off" earlier than the maple.

My years of living in England  has made me more aware (with a lot of tutoring from the spouse) of the beauty of nature around me.  I learned to recognise the trees (well, some), the leaves, the flowers and the berries - but don't ask me their botanical names.  It's something that most afficionados of trees and flowers like the spouse and Jack, who can reel off these names off the top of their heads.

Jack - in - the - Garden , 21 September 2014
I wish I had learned to be more appreciative of trees and flowers when I was growing up in Singapore in the 1950s.  My mother loved gardening and she had not one, but two green thumbs - a talent which she passed on to my sister Maznah.

This was all I could manage when I was working in Brunei .  It was my pride and joy.

But it's never too late.  I can identify my favourite wild flower - the Bunga Tahi Ayam (Camara Lantana).  They flourish in our garden at Setiawangsa.

The spouse even made me a hand-drawn picture of my favourite bloom.

But I have discovered a new love - the Senduduk - not the garden centre variety, but the wild Senduduk.

Lely's (Pickled Herring) picture of the wild Senduduk in our garden.
Another 'wild' interest of mine was my hunt for my favourite fruit tree.  The tree and fruits belonged to no one.  It grows free and happy anywhere in the kampung and brings so much joy to all the children who would climb all over its branches, pick its fruits and know that you will be safe from irate neighbours or their dogs.

I was absolutely delirious when - after endless searchings - I found my beautiful  and bountiful tree at Paya Jaras, Sungai Buloh a few years ago.

Pokok Ceri

That one red juicy wild cherry - how my brothers and I would scramble over each other just for a bite and a gulp.

Those were the days.  I hope that Pokok Ceri will still be there when we get back.


Wan F said...

Pn. AsH, try give the rubber trees a serious look during their wintering. Marvel at their riot of shades of orange and brown. They'll be more beautiful than those of dogwood. I came to appreciate their colors only after my oversea stint. What we have at home is equally if not more beautiful. If only we can spare the time to appreciate them.

anak si-hamid said...

Thank you Wan F for your comment and your appreciation of the "wintering' rubber trees. I never knew that - I shall now look out for it. Thank you.

Growing up in Singapore, all I know is the cherry tree and the Flame of the Forest and several others.

Why must we be and live abroad before we can appreciate what we have in our homeland?

What are we teaching our children today? During my colonial primary school days we learned a subject called "Nature Study"!