Tuesday, August 16, 2011
The rewards of rastling with pricker bushes
We are still discovering, or, should I say re-discovering? the many splendorous things about summertime in Vermont.
After what feels like years of unremarkable blackberry picking on my parents' property, the blackberries I remember from my childhood, plentiful and, some of them, almost as big as our thumbs, are back.
Everything has its year. And for that, we're glad.
We went out one lazy, quiet evening right about supper time. Esther was having a sleepover so it was just me and Isla. Or was it Isla and I? I guess it all depends on what I'm trying to say. Despite years of practice, I'm never too sure. Always second guessing. Overthinking.
The thing about blackberry picking is, you need to be dressed for combat. (I wasn't.) Those bushes are armed and will defend themselves to the bitter end. And they aren't above ambushes from behind. Could this be the origin of the word "ambush?"
While trying to break through to the most enticing stash, set back from the trail protected by a daunting wall of prickers, I felt a bit like all those poor princes in Sleeping Beauty. The ones that didn't make it to the castle.
Needless to say, my legs look like those of an 8-year-old boy just come back from Boy-Scout camp. But I did come back with the prize, half a sand bucket filled with plump berries. And a world of choice when it came to deciding just how we were going to eat them: Straight out of the bucket, in a bowl with cream, or maybe in a blackberry cobbler if mom gets so inspired.
I will now share some photos taken on our expedition despite being hugely annoyed at their quality. (Did I mention my camera drowned in the lake a while back? I've tried everything, including the rice trick, and, it seems... I need a new camera. There's a blurry ghost floating in almost every picture. The more natural, gorgeous light involved, the worse the blur.)