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Posts Tagged ‘blackberries’

072120-open-door-early-morning

When my summertime neighbor opens her front door in the morning, I know it’s OK to go over there even if it’s only 6:30. We like to take our walk early, before there are too many mopeds and before it gets hot.

In this plague year, we put on our masks and walk six feet apart. If there are no cars or other people, one of us walks in the middle of the road. Otherwise, one is in front and one six feet behind.

A few other people prefer the early hours, too. It can be a good time to paint the rock and have the work last more than half an hour.

We always check to see if the lotus on Lakeside has any buds. This year looks bad. Sandra notes the little pond is almost dry.

The marker honoring New Shoreham’s early indigenous residents, the Manisseans, is near their old burial ground. We usually pause and turn around here.

On the way home, we check on how the potential ingredients for Sandra’s jellies are coming along. Will the wild blackberry crop be good this year? How many many jars of beach plum jam is this spot likely to provide?

Last year, in between hunting for Monarch caterpillars on milkweed, we picked a lot of Queen Anne’s Lace, and Sandra made a batch of “Jelly a la Thelma,” which has a slightly lemony flavor.

You can probably tell our walk is not aerobic exercise.

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Inside my neighbor’s lotus flower is something that looks like a shower head. I think I will make a new year’s resolution on it (the school year, say): “Because you can never imagine what’s inside the lotus, try to┬ábe alert to the subtext.”

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Blackberries

Took an early walk. The grass was still wet and decorated with white Queen Anne’s Lace, green thistles, blue Ragged Sailor, pink clover, and yellow Black-eyed Susans. Catbirds, sparrows, and warblers were busy busy in the wild grape vines and the blackberry brambles.

My neighbor’s car was parked on the side of the road near a house that for decades was covered in brambles and vines like Sleeping Beauty’s castle. Today it’s a nice little rental property overlooking a pond. My neighbor was berrying in one of his secret, not-so-secret spots while the owners were away. (It was either him or the birds after all.) His wife makes great jams and jellies with the blackberries — and with the beach plums that ripen later in the season. Perhaps he will leave a jar on the absentee owner’s doorstep.

It was not yet 7 a.m., and the landmark Painted Rock said “Sarah + Christian Engaged.” I hope Sarah and Christian get to see it before a new message gets painted on top. Smart painters take photos. Something I learned the hard way when I painted the rock for Suzanne’s 16th and John’s 21st birthdays during a past Birthday Week.

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