This was one of the rare years when it was too cold for everyone to sit outside on All Hallow’s Eve, and far too gusty for their traditional bonfire.
And so they had all gathered in the late evening at Rabbit’s tea shop instead, where they slurped hot, brothy soup and took turns telling ghost stories.
The next morning, Old Possum was ambling toward Raccoon’s tree nest. Looking down, he noticed pools of soft, watery sunshine on the garden path and, looking up, gray-and-white clouds that looked as though they’d been painted across a pale, watercolor sky. “Ahh, a perfect day,” Possum said to himself.
And he said as much again to Raccoon, during their second breakfast of tea and cake, although she was a bit more skeptical.
Later in the day, though, Possum had been proven correct: while still brisk, the day had turned bright, and the afternoon, full of long shadows, was fading into a calm, still evening — perfect for a bonfire.
(Early November 2023)