The day was very mild again, and possessed of an aural clarity which brought near the sound of traffic on distant roads. The expansive sky bore no trace of haze, and the sunset featured no shade of color other than gold. Pine needles now lie so thick upon the ground that it is impossible to walk without one's steps making a loud crunch, and the road verges are paved with brown patches where the needles have been brushed aside by passing cars. The warmth has left the evening air scented with pine resin, which now is augmented by a hint of wood smoke as someone counters the rapid onset of night's chill with a fire. Quiet has descended, both town and wood wrapped in autumn serenity, only the serenade of lingering summer insects disturbing the tranquil landscape. The crows who dropped acorns onto the street to crack them, and the woodpeckers who loudly hammered other acorns into cracks in the utility poles have gone to roost. While the neighbors sit before their television sets, or prepare for bed, I will go outside and enjoy the quiet, and watch the windows go dark one by one, each failing light making the moon and stars a bit brighter.