As discussed in a previous post, I recently spent a crisp autumn Saturday at Homestead Farms in Virgina with the WIN’s Travel Network. We picked apples, had great conversation about WOOFing as a means of traveling cheaply, drank hot apple cider, bought veggies and gourds galore and even took a hayride!
It was such a wonderful respite from being in the city. As much as I enjoy aspects of urban living (amazing food, diverse populations, walkability, etc.) there are definitely things I miss about living in the country near a small town. In addition to my friends and family (and as the years pass I come to appreciate my friends from home more and more – there’s just something special about people who have known you through your adolescence and still manage to like you, haha), one of the things I crave most about where I grew up is SPACE. My parents always had a garden in the back yard where they grew corn, green beans, tomatoes, strawberries, zucchini, cucumbers and all other sorts of things in the summer. I miss the fresh air, grass under my feet and raking leaves in the fall. This was such a great chance to get a small slice of rural life into my otherwise crowded urban existence.
In addition to all of this, I was really needing some autumnal experiences. This is my absolute favorite season and I have really missed out on my favorite activities over the past 4 years living abroad. The crisp cool air after the hot, humid summer, trees bursting with color, U of M football, hot apple cider, cozy sweaters and the feeling that there is something new and full of potential just around the corner fills me with such contentment and peace. So, imagine my disappointment when, despite being in the US again, I am still listening to football games (no TV! At least I’m now in the same time zone?), the trees haven’t yet changed (DC is still full of green!) and I can’t get out of the city to an apple orchard (no car!). What a blessing it then was to get the notification from WIN that their October event was out to rural Maryland. This trip allowed me to exhale a sigh of relief and refresh my soul. It also provided me with lots of Pink Ladies with which I promptly went home and tried my hand at apple butter 🙂 I also splurged and got a caramel apple to take home. These are such a guilty pleasure hang-over from my first job at Diehl’s Orchard. I was 13 and could make a tray of 21 apples in 3 minutes!
So, here are the pictures from my afternoon away. These pictures aren’t the greatest – I’m normally not a fan of over-processing pictures (as I’ve done here), but I was really more preoccupied with enjoying my day than taking nice shots, so I decided to edit them up a bit so they’re more visually interesting. Enjoy, and if you’re in Michigan please go have a donut for me 🙂