Dog rolls in rasping fallen leaves. A stick clatters to the ground nearby and we all pause, startled. We wait together for the intruder to Show Himself. Then, as if on cue, we relax together, returning to writhing, stick chewing, musing on life. The colours have gone now, no ecstatic fireworks, the final shouts of summer have died away to sleeping brown and dignified twigs.
A small stone rolls past me and on down the steep hillside. I will shortly resume my clamber to a new view, the brown one rests his head on my shoulder, waiting.