Blueberry Fields Forever

Ah, yes. The best of plans often lead to tough decisions. We were faced with such an opportunity this weekend when we traveled north for our annual blueberry-picking ritual. The temps were nearly 20 degrees lower than they were when we went picking last year, so we were all excited at the prospect of spending hours in the blueberry fields, picking the juicy blues as long as the kids held up.

That was, of course, before we pulled into the orchard to learn that they were closed on Sundays. So, to paraphrase Arlo Guthrie, We had never heard of a farm closed on a sunday, a day of givin’, and so we drove off into the mid-day sun, lookin’ for another place to pick the blueberries. We didn’t find one….

Till we came to a welcome center and happened upon a big book of farms in the entire state, what they offered, when, and whether you could go a’ pickin’. We decided on a place called Brown’s Orchard, and boy were we surprised by the outcome of the day.

Me and Some Guy playin' Norwegian WoodWhen we got there, we were immediately drawn into the Orchard Retreat area, where a large pavillion filled with families reading, playing Sorry!, and eating ice cream were relaxing and enjoying the acoustic sounds of Me and Some Guy (that’s the actual name of the duo, and boy were they good). When I walked into the covered pavillion, they were playing Norwegian Wood, and it felt like it was a very good thing indeed that the other orchard had snubbed their nose at us (closed on Sunday, puh-lease). But Brown’s had everything we could have asked for, except…..

That’s right. No blueberry pickin’. It seems as if we missed the season by a good two weeks, and there wasn’t going to be any more picking blueberries till next summer.

The kids were disappointed, as were we, and so we took a little adventurous walk down an old dirt road that led us to the apple orchards. Now, we were nearly sure that this was not a featured attraction to Brown’s Orchards, as we didn’t see another soul around us the entire time we meandered through the apple trees, each picking a single favorite fruit from the trees and eating it along the way. Pickin' Apples at Brown's Orchards We got to the end of the orchard when we figured it was time to head back, and we felt as if we were in an apple labyrinth, where the trees would come alive at any moment just like in the Wizard of Oz….The kids’ imaginations, not to mention our own, were fully engaged midway through our return, and we were certain that snakes and bees and wild animals (oh, my!) were going to decend upon us at any moment.

They didn’t, of course, but what we did get was a nice adventure out of what could have been a disappointing day.

Turn around and go home? Never! The fun is in the journey, my friends, not always reaching the intended destination!

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