After we had so much fun blackberry picking a couple of weeks ago, we invited our friends the Arthurs to go with us. There are so many berries along the roads these days; they seem to call to us to “pick and eat!” everywhere we go.
Here are a few fun photos from our blackberry picking adventure by an old railroad station. If you’re curious about what we do with all the blackberries once we have them (besides eating them while picking them…), I’ve got a wonderful recipe for berry tarts that I’m going to share tomorrow. The tarts are so good that I have stashed hundreds of berries in our freezer so we can enjoy them long after the season is over.
Lena and Lucas were diligent berry pickers for about 15 minutes before they started eating all they had and sneaking berries from everyone else’s buckets. I’m glad I caught them dutifully in action, though!
Children and brambles. We all emerged with a lot of scratches… and some damaged clothing.
This sweet little guy sat in his car seat on the railroad tracks and watched everyone for at least an hour and a half. I was so impressed with his patience! I literally fall in love with him more every day. Is that possible? Somehow… it happens.
Resting and showing off the result of some faithful pickin’.
Still at it. Go, Lucas!
Lena could not stop…
… eating berries! She filled up her bucket and then ate every berry in it.
Where are your berries, Lucas??
The sun goes down by the old railroad station.
Matching fishy faces?
Dads keeping their sons out of the brambles.
Caleb & Elise
The old railway station. The dads and kids explored this at the beginning while Becca and I were filling our buckets.
And Lena watches Lucas as the sun goes down.
Here’s one last photo from our drive home. We had noticed a few weeks ago that this orange grove looked totally dead. There was not a single green leaf in the whole orchard. Had the owners given it up? Would they just let a dead orchard sit there indefinitely?
Then, when we drove by it after blackberry picking, we saw that they were burning piles of branches. They had chopped up the whole orchard and were burning everything to the ground. It was an arresting — and quintessentially Sicilian — sight!
I saw the orchard again yesterday and there is absolutely nothing left now… just black patches on the ground where all the fires burned themselves out. Now we hope to see some miniature orange saplings in the ground soon, just like we’ve seen in several other orchards around our town. Although I have no hand in this process of dying and planting, I love to watch it, observing the cycles of the land create their own patterns over and above the seasons of the year.