June 30, 2007

Orchard Hill Farm

I think my daughter, Ruth was actually happy to see me, though she did make one of her dramatic entrances. Adam, Stephen, and I had arrived and greeted Sam in the center hall stairs when she swooped down the stairs like a bright blue and yellow field bird and said, “Daddy! How wonderful to see you.”

“Hello daughter,” I said as I hugged her and kissed her on the cheek. She made the rounds to Adam and Stephen as well, and I was surprised that she seemed to be on such good terms with Stephen, discussing favorite TV sitcom characters as Sam, Adam, and I chatted about the weather, the farm, and his experimentation with the latest apple varietals. Apparently, Ruth has accepted Adam’s mate without reservation. Perhaps my daughter has finally vanquished her demons.

As you know, dear Journal, Ruth is a wonderful cook, and we had a fantastic farm dinner that evening: a pot roast, carrots, snow peas, and lumpy bistro mashed potatoes with mixed in sautéed garlic, celery, and onion. For dessert there were two pies, rhubarb, and apple. Ruth’s piecrusts are to die for, so short they melt in your mouth, and of course, the rhubarb was home grown, as were the apples.

The next day, Thursday, Sam took me on a tour of the farm to show me the improvements made to the storage barn, and orchards. He is so proud of his large produce stand at the end of the farm lane. “It’s not a store, Isaac. I don’t want this to get out of hand. I just sell fruit and vegetables in season. I avoid using so many of the fertilizers and pesticides so that my local produce is much healthier and better for you than what you can get in the super market. I open in May and close at the end of October.”

“But, what about all the fruit you grow in my orchards?”

“The rest of the apples, peaches, and pears are still sold wholesale.”

“You know, I can’t say I miss the farming, Sam. Though I was quite successful, I enjoyed doing my art much more.”

We stayed at Orchard Hill for 4 days before moving on to Rehoboth Beach where Adam and Stephen had rented a 4-bedroom house for one week. I’ll report on our stay at the beach in my next entry, dear Journal.

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