Thursday, September 20, 2007

Leaf peeping

My mother always said Virginia was her favorite place to live. She would know. Throughout Dad's military career they spent the better part of their time there, off and on. She really loved their proximity to the DC area as it always made for easy and inexpensive entertainment for out of town visiting guests and family. I can only hope when the boys are old enough to appreciate all of the museums and history, that everything will still be free to tour.

Anyway, another reason she loved the north east (although Virginians think they are in the South) was the defined four seasons that existed, spring, summer, fall and winter, specifically the fall where the leaves turned colors and made a vivid transition from summer to winter.

It wasn't until I received an email today from a former client (and now friend) who is traveling throughout the north east, that I was exposed to the term "leaf peeping". Like the word "'shrooms", I got a little chuckle out of the phrase "leaf peeping" and had to do some quick research to see what its truly all about. Wikipedia provided the following insights:

Leaf peeping is an autumn activity in areas where foliage changes colors. 'Leaf peepers' are those who participate in photographing and viewing the fall foliage.

"Leafing" is a tricky prospect because in numerous areas, the leaves are only visible for a limited number of weeks. Arizona's displays, though stunning, are only in their prime for a three-week period, on average.

The term "leaf peeping" made an appearance in "And It's Surely To Their Credit," an episode of The West Wing which originally aired on November 1, 2000. President Bartlet, during one of many attempts at recording his weekly radio address says, "This month, as autumn is in full bloom in much of the nation, the weekends will be devoted by many of you to leaf peeping and foot....Leaf peeping? Is that something we do now?"

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