Saturday, October 03, 2009

a rare autumn day

My husband and I had the rare treat today of going off on an adventure together, as neither of our independent teenagers wanted to go. We set out just after noon and went to a local vineyard to pick muscadine grapes.

The vineyard is remarkably compact and easy to navigate, and there were five varieties to choose from. The moment we walked up the path from the parking area we smelled the grapes, and quickly learned that once you get into the vines themselves, ducking under into the shade is not only good protection from the sun, but the best way to find the harvest.

We picked nearly five pounds and paid just under $5 for them. We bought a bottle of Scuppernong wine and went on to a little town I've been wanting to explore. Interestingly, this rural town has a thriving general store, which has a grill that serves local meat and vegetables. We had lunch sitting in Adirondack chairs out front, waving away flies and watching the dissipation and formation of a few very small clouds in an otherwise cloudless blue sky.

On our way back toward home, we stopped off in hopes of picking up a big round bale of hay from our hay grower. He was out harrowing a field, but his wife walked us through their organic garden with colander and clippers in hand, and we brought home a bag of peppers, tomatoes, and okra.

We visited with the two beloved farm dogs and the elder-cat, met the pigs, who came running out to greet us, and proceeded to dig for grass roots, and then wandered over to the cabin where the eggs are kept. We picked out two dozen house eggs, and then talked awhile hoping M. would arrive to spear our hay bale.

We spent a little bit of time driving out to where his wife thought he might be, with directions to pull over and put the windows down so we might hear the tractor and track him down. We weren't able to find him, but it was delightful to take some extra time looking.

The truck smelled of muscadines and the kids hadn't called.

I ended the day with a glass of scuppernong wine in the barnyard, sitting with my son, surrounded by horses and donkeys and Dickens E. Wickens.

Rafer Johnson put his head over my shoulder and did his happy donkey snort. Dickens kneaded my thighs with his paws. Keil Bay stood behind me and grazed. And Salina blew soft mare breath onto my cheek as she stood looking out waiting for my husband to come home with the hay.

The full moon rose up over the trees and we fed evening hay in the moonlight.

I'm not sure it gets much better than this.


Grey Horse Matters said...

I don't think it does get much better than that either. What a joyous day full of adventure and just being in the moments of the day enjoying what life has to offer.

MitMoi said...

That sounds like a lovely fall day.

I ... fought with God's green creation - and I can tell you - at the moment I'm not too enchanted with it - and am wishing I still lived in the desert where there are few "volunteer plants".

I ran across this blog today - and immediately though of you and your donkey crew. There are some great pictures of their Western brethren.

billie said...

Arlene, I'm guessing you're having similar days on the ocean.

billie said...


Linda and George and Alan (and Deets and Hank and Lyle and Smooch, etc.) are cyber-friends and we visit them at 7MSN every morning. :)

We have George and Alan's 2009 calendar in our tack room!

She has a great blog - anyone who hasn't visited, should.

Michelle said...

Oh, I'm salivating at your haul of fresh foods. Mmmmm....Sounds like an absolutely wonderful day. Hope your Monday's going as well!

billie said...

Michelle, it was a truly wonderful day, even more poignantly so after what happened yesterday.

Looking back, I wonder if the universe knew I needed to roll into Sunday from a mindset that everything we need is here.