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» Sunday, October 18, 2009The Youngs and the Blustery Day
When that alarm rang this morning, how I hated it! It was 7:30 and we went to bed after one and it was so nice and cozy under the blankets. But we did get up, muddled about, and managed to get out of the house and on the way to Ellijay for the Apple Festival by 8:30.
What a morning! The low, dark clouds had vanished and the sky was bright blue with some marshmallow clouds dotted about. It was in the high thirties—yes, you heard that correctly!—with a nice breeze. I was still sleepy, but we put the Marcelle Willis Celtic CD we bought at Yellow Daisy (she plays dulcimer, and the CD also includes Irish whistle, some lively, some more sweet), and that brightened me up a good deal. Once we arrived at the Lions Club parking lot, however, and emerged into that brisk, clean air, it was if I just woke up from hibernation and was finally alive after another stultifying summer.
Wow, wow, wow. We got there about 9:30 and walked around for two hours and weren't even tired afterward. Previous years we came early, it was cool for about an hour and then the sun switched to "roast" and we'd leave sweating and exhausted. This was just glorious! We checked out all the booths in turn and did the following:
Bought two Christmas gifts.
Bought a new cinnamon scented hot pad.
Bought five pieces of Ginny's Fudge for dessert.
Bought a peck of Granny Smith apples fresh from the North Georgia orchards.
Bought a cute small ceramic statue of stacked jack o'lanterns and also a small ceramic Holstein calf that sits on the edge of a shelf with one leg hanging down.
And two most wonderful things: first, we went into the one building there, and they were selling sweat- and T-shirts after applying iron-on patterns of your choice on them. They had a fall design with chickadees on a dogwood branch with rusted leaves and the dogwood "hips" berries, and a winter/Christmas design with chickadees on a holly branch. Lovely sweatshirts like these are usually $35-$45 each from catalogs, and they had them two for $25! So James bought me the Christmas one for my birthday and I got the fall one myself!
And then, the lady with the little "feather" trees was there. (Hers are not actually made from feathers; they look like the branches are done from some type of thread, but it's designed like a feather tree.) Hers was the little feather tree that I turned into this last year, a perfect little jewel. Well, when I conceived it last year, I debated either decorating the way I ended up doing it (the 1890-1910 look), or doing something old-fashioned, like handmade-looking ornaments and wooden toys that looked like someone living in the country made the decorations. So now that I have a second tree, I can try the look I didn't try. Cool!
And we tasted the dips and the jellies without being disturbed by bees and hornets, enjoyed browsing each of the booths, and after we bought our apples James sat under cover watching the cake walk while I ran back for the pumpkins and one of the gifts without him having to tow twenty pounds of apples.
The only thing wrong with the weather was that I felt bad for the vendors. They are in these little pavilions with plastic roofs and plastic sides you can button down for inclement weather. Yesterday they had rain, which is nasty when you're out in the middle of a grassy field that tends to mud (there was still mud today left over from yesterday), and today the wind was blowing so hard that several of the vendors had to take down the plastic sides, which they had erected to keep warm, because the wind picked up so much that it was rattling the merchandise on the shelves. I had to pick up two little plaques for one lady because the wind just swept them off the table they were set on.
But this wasn't the end of the wonderful day. We left the festival through downtown Ellijay and started back south. Just south of town are two "farm markets" on the east side of the road. The one on the right is the larger of the two, the Panorama Farmers Market. We wandered the building looking at the things available: more fresh apples, dried fruits, jellies, salad dressing, goats' milk lotions, cookbooks, canning supplies, and a room devoted to penny candies. For a moment it was like being back at Tom's Superette again. They had candy buttons and candy cigarettes, licorice and Mary Janes, buttons on a string and peppermint pillows, and all sorts of goodies including peanut brittle (yes, the peanuts predominated...LOL). We bought a big apple pie, some dried cranberries and cherries, and a jar of blackberry spread that was like something from heaven, strong-flavored and sweet with no sugar added. Yum!
The other place was more of a plain farm market, selling mostly apples, and also some ciders, gourds, and pumpkins. I did get a nice trio of Indian corn. I love Indian corn!
On the way home we stopped in Canton for lunch. We at first headed for Olive Garden, then didn't want to spend so much money and decided on Subway instead until I noticed the little Asian place next door. Frankly, it wasn't very good. Very slow service and the little appetizer I ordered in lieu of lunch, "beef triangles," had very little beef in them. Oh, well, live and learn. The wonton soup was okay.
Visited the Books-a-Million in the adjacent shopping center and did find a copy of "Country." I let my subscription lapse because I really only want the fall and winter issues, and I was finding the magazine quite regularly last winter and spring. Of course the moment I really wanted it, all the supplies dried up! So I suppose I should re-up.
As a bonus this issue has an article about Rhode Island in it! They are in Chepachet.
Had to stop at Kroger for gasoline and a newspaper, and then the lovely day was over. Just finished watching Clark Howard and are now on Adam Hunt-Davis' What the Victorians/Tudors Did for Us—great stuff! Love these British history shows!
Oh, and tonight is the newest "Treehouse of Horror." We quit watching The Simpsons ages ago, but always make a point of watching the "Treehouse" ones, even if lately they've been injected with annoying political humor. This is the first time in years that it hasn't been on after Hallowe'en, I guess to take advantage of sweeps. Guess that means Homer and the gang aren't ratings fodder anymore.