Thursday, September 17, 2009

I've Led a Sheltered Life

I've led a sheltered life. My parents didn't raise me correctly nor did they care if I had the skills to go into the world and become successful. When this subject came up, my higher education came to a screeching halt. I begged and pleaded. Still, no one would teach me how to do it. Finally, on my own, last weekend, I rose above all the intimidation. I decided to stick my neck out, suck it up and be an adult.

I picked my own blueberries!

Just down the street from my place is a field. For four years I've watched the little plants in the field grow into shrubs. Last summer the mesh netting went up, barring the local deer from an all-you-can-eat buffet of delectable blueberries. Bad for the deer, good for the humans.

Saturday I drove to the blueberries. I was equipped with everything I thought was necessary for an attack on a blueberry bush. Rubber gloves, check. A stool for sitting and snuggling up close to the harvest, got it. And sunglasses, so no one would recognize me when I asked stupid questions about picking berries.

I nonchalantly asked the farmer how he would like me to pick his berries. I didn't want to let on I'd never picked. I hoped he might have a particular technique, a method. He didn't. Crap, so now I had to either walk into the field and ad lib my berry picking or pretend I knew how to do it and possibly make a terrible life-altering mistake.

He gestured to the little blue (berry) bucket with the non-biodegradeable plastic bag liner. (Did I mention this was an organic blueberry farm?) "Oh, very nice," I said, thinking complimenting him on his choice of collection receptacles would loosen his lips. It didn't. "So should I just...," I said, nodding over my shoulder toward the field.

"Uh, huh," --- he elaborated.

I entered the field through the mesh with bucket in hand, tentative about where to start. I saw others crouched over shrubs so decided to join them. They didn't look too scary with their blue hands and blue lips. At least they were talking to each other.

I sat down next to a shrub chock full of the frosty blue delights. I smiled to the pensive pickers to calm their nerves and my own. I gloved up, pushed my sunglasses firmly up to the bridge of my nose and exhaled. I reached toward the first little branch and held my bucket beneath it. As I grasped the first berry, it and it's neighbors jumped off the branch and into my waiting container. Cool! How did I do that? I looked around to see if anyone else was having the success I was. I tried not to smile too widely as I relaxed my shoulders and reached toward the next branch.

Four more berries fell into my bucket. Then five more. I smiled and said something, hardly audible like, "This is one of the nicest blueberry fields I've visited in a long time." My fellow pickers heard me I guess because their blue lips moved and they nodded their heads.

It was contagious. I was hooked. The picking pace picked up and I soon had over 3 pounds of blueberries in my little blue bucket. I must stop, I must. Just one more pound, one more. I backed slowly away from the shrub and the field and my fellow pickers. I approached the farmer and his scale. He smiled and weighed my loot. I gave him a very, very small amount of money.

As I drove away that day, with a big grin on my face I waved to my fellow pickers. Their blue hands waved back. I thought to myself, "He didn't charge me near enough money for the honor of picking his blueberries."

I'll be back.


penni Thursday, September 17, 2009 6:42:00 PM  

Fresh blueberry muffins -- the best!

the7msn Thursday, September 17, 2009 6:48:00 PM  

What time is the pie coming out of the oven? I'll be right there.

sonia a. mascaro Saturday, September 19, 2009 6:22:00 AM  

Those blueberries looks delicious!

Thanks for your Congratulations! I am happy I was a winner of the Calendar!

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