In our own backyard...You know what they say about 'an apple a day'I love apples. In fact, I eat one every day on my rather long drive to work in the morning to keep the “whirlies” at bay. Last weekend, however, I think I overdid it.
By: Wendy Johnson, Pine Journal
I love apples. In fact, I eat one every day on my rather long drive to work in the morning to keep the “whirlies” at bay.
Last weekend, however, I think I overdid it. My husband and I decided to go to the annual Apple Fest celebration in Bayfield, Wis. I had never attended before, though every year I’ve wished that I had.
Saturday sounded like it was going to be the perfect fall day, and without much urging, we talked ourselves out of bringing in the dock, putting the summer plants to bed, raking leaves, and all of those other fall chores that suddenly become so urgent at this time of the year.
It was wonderful driving through the rural countryside of northern Wisconsin, enjoying what had to be peak color in the trees and admiring all of the roadside stands along the way selling pumpkins, squash, fresh produce and corn shocks.
We arrived at Bayfield late morning and parked on the outskirts of town since the traffic by then was already congested. It was a scenic walk down the hill to the lake and the village, and we enjoyed the
exercise after two hours of riding in the car.
As we plunged into the crowds of people, we were suddenly caught up in the frenzy of “apple this” and “apple that.” Vendors’ booths advertised everything from apple brats to pulled pork with apple barbeque sauce, from fresh apple cider to apple cider wine, and from apple butter to apple preserves. As we walked past a booth inexplicably boasting deep-fried Twinkies and Oreos, I shook my head in disgust. In the midst of all that “apple mania,” they just seemed so...... yesterday.
The two of us worked our way through the ever-growing throng of people, wanting to scope everything out before deciding what we wanted to eat for lunch. We were about half way through town when Ken suddenly made a beeline to a booth advertising warm apple sundaes.
“I think I’ll start here....” he said, and placed his order. Together, we dived in to the succulent creation, which featured a wedge of hot apple pie on the bottom, covered with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and caramel sauce drizzled over the top. It was absolutely heavenly!
Thinking we’d better get something “solid” in our stomachs, we stopped at a booth selling fresh stir fry and ordered a giant carton of the savory stuff, attacking it between the two of us with plastic forks.
We’d earlier spotted an outdoor grill with barbequed turkey legs sizzling atop it and couldn’t get that vision out of our minds. As soon as we rounded that particular corner once again, we knew we’d just have to have one.
By then, my stomach had begun a pleasant little hum of pleasure, but I was beginning to feel as though I’d probably eaten enough. We walked around some more, looked through the craft booths, enjoyed the sights of the harbor, and began to work our way back through the main street.
“I think I might just have to have a caramel apple before I go....” I sighed. “I can’t resist.”
While I was in line to buy the caramel apple, Ken wandered over to a booth across the way and bought an entire apple pie!
The trip back uphill to the car was slow and laborious, and that pleasant little hum in my stomach had begun to sound more like a war of protest over all of the things we’d eaten. When we arrived at the truck at last, Ken pulled out a plastic fork and dug into the pie, but I declined, saying the caramel apple was still weighing heavy on my conscience.
On the way out of town, we stopped at an apple orchard to take photos, enjoy the ripe red apples on the trees and watch them making fresh apple cider. I bought a couple of bags of apples to bring home with us and, as we hit the road, I lifted one out of the bag to sample it.
But ironically, after all of the exotic foods that we’d consumed already, I found I no longer had the stomach for a simple apple!