The weather is perfect today. A blue sky, scudded by billows of white clouds, hides behind the gently rustling leaves of the maple, cherry, and oak trees in the back yard. Bird song comes through every open window; Mist follows these calls raptly, unrealistically ready to pounce at each burst of sound.
The laundry is hung out to dry in the sun. Freshly baked seed bread sits cooling on the kitchen counter.
Attila had a free moment en route to one of his many assignations, and dropped in for a bit. We briefly settled on the deck, coffee cups in hand, to share a few moments. Oh yes, I have weakened, and have started drinking coffee again.
As we sat on the deck, from overhead, a sudden loud boom shattered the peace. A deep rumbling, which brought on an instant headache, followed it. It was a sonic boom, as a plane exceeded the speed of sound, breaking the sound barrier. Attila was quite familiar with the sound from his childhood. However, it was a first-time experience for me, and an unpleasant one. That plane has been buzzing the sky above all morning, but thankfully has not reached that critical speed again.
One thing that Attila and I share is childhood memories of our grandparents. Both sets were people of strong character, who lived in a state of relative self-sufficiency. We both remember the magic of picking wild berries on beautiful sunny days, in those secret spots that only our grandparents knew.
Yesterday, Sunday, Attila and I spent a pleasant morning in a fallow field, picking wild strawberries. Picking wild berries is one of the pleasantest pastimes imaginable. We chose the perfect day for it. There were clouds for the sun to hide behind from time to time, and a lovely breeze to keep the blackflies from swarming. When we at last tired, we had five quarts of beautiful berries.
As an aside, we are very careful about where we pick wild berries. The soil on some vacant land may be contaminated by previous industrial land uses, or industrial waste. It is not wise to harvest, or consume, foodstuffs grown on land with an unknown history.
The wild strawberries yielded four jars of jam. Fresh rhubarb from our back garden augmented the remaining strawberries, yielding a batch of Wild Strawberry Rhubarb Jam. The amount of sugar needed for a good "set" is reduced by using "light" pectin. The resulting jam has an intense fruit flavour. It is great!
Tomorrow is Canada Day, a holiday, but is seems that many of our neighbors have today off work as well. A bustling atmosphere surrounds us on all sides. I am serenaded by the pleasant sounds of people relaxing, visiting, and catching up with household and garden chores.
The wind is calling my name, suggesting to me that a quiet cup of tea under the trees would do me the world of good. Who am I to ignore such good advice!
|RECIPES :: Cast
On the Screen
starrring Jack Nicholson
Wind: W 11 km/h
Barometric: 102.2 kPa
Sunrise 5:48 AM EDT
Sunset 9:07 PM EDT
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