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Saluda News & Notations: Observations on the first day of fall

“The human soul needs actual beauty more than bread.”

~ D. H. Lawrence

Yesterday evening’s slanting sunlight brushed high into regal tulip poplars along our peaceful meanderings, golden-yellow leaves amid summer green. Amid the splashes of scarlet sumac and dogwood, the tall poplars mark the turning to fall which begins today. As usual, I wonder where summer flew.

The Turtle basks out in the back drive; River Dog does the same as I paint. Nearby, Pikachu earns her nickname, The Poacher, of bugs, hanging branches, blue-tailed lizards and unsuspecting butterflies. Luckily she’s not much of a hunter, for which I’m glad, although I wish she’d find that evil mouse upstairs.

When she’s interested in something, a pink collar bell tinkles as she moves, there’s a rrrrr-ing meow, and I’m putting down the paint brush to go do a quick rescue. So far, there has been no harm done. (The Poacher is better at poaching and admiring than bringing home dinner offerings.)

Mornings, I take a cup of coffee to the porch, warming hands on the mug, admiring spiders’ lace hangings sparkling—such a simple thing that is ritual to feed the heart. Later, filtering through the bright day, a drift of happy Mexican music from a roofing crew hard at work nearby sings along with cat bell tinkling, fish pond trickling, soft wind chime songs, golden poplars stretch to blue sky. Once again, autumn kisses our souls in a small town with a big heart.

Saluda Tailgate Market is open on Fridays from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the city parking lot off Main Street.

Saluda Welcome Table is every Tuesday. Dinner is served from 5:30 -6:45 p.m. in the fellowship hall of Saluda United Methodist Church. All are welcome; donations accepted.

Saluda Community Land Trust (SCLT) has “Walks in the Woods” on the first and third Sundays each month. For information on hikes, contact Chuck Hearon at 828-817-0364 or chearon@skyrunner.net. Contact SCLT at 828-749-1560 or visit www.saludasclt.org to learn more about our local land trust.

Saluda Historic Depot is located at 32 West Main Street and will have extended hours in mid-September, Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Sunday noon to 4 p.m. Saluda Train Tales are held on the third Friday each month at 7 p.m. through October.

The community potluck will be at Saluda Center on Sept. 25, 6 p.m.; bring a favorite dish to share.

Art Notes: The annual Art Trek open studio tour on Sept. 30 – Oct. 1 will include a gallery show of all participating artists, and a preview party/reception from 5-7 p.m. on Sept. 29 at Upstairs Artspace, 49 S. Trade Street, Tryon. Saluda artists will include Bonnie Bardos and Doc Welty.

Did you know Saluda School has 171 children enrolled this year, and all students are given a free lunch and breakfast? New faculty members are Tara McDonald (kindergarten teacher), Lindsey Burnett (assistant), Cathey Stoney (interim art teacher), and Wendy Berryhill (assistant). Cari Maneen is the principal.

Saluda Living in Place (SLIP), which aims to help seniors stay in their homes as they age, will sponsor free health screenings, refreshments, and information from different agencies on Oct. 19 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. at Saluda Fire Department on Greenville Street. For information or if you need transportation, contact Edie Campbell at 828-243-0734 or becampbell@charter.net by Oct. 9.

Happy September Birthday to Wayne Thompson, Courtney Hoots, Merci Weitzen, Dale McEntire, Joni Rauschenbach, Sonya Monts, Linda Kaye Hayes, Carol Kenfield, Debbie Fisher, Leslie Jespersen, Linda Mintz, Sheila Billeter, Cary Pace, Ross Arrington, Hop Foster, Chuck Hearon, Alexia Timberlake, Jason Justus, Beth Carson, Clark Thompson, Nicholas Edwards, Cindy Tuttle, and Don Clapp.  Add your birthday to the list! Just email or call me—no ages mentioned unless you’re under 2 or over 100!

Thank you, dear readers, for reading this column. You can contact me at bbardos@gmail.com, 828-749-1153, or bonniebardosart.com.