A couple of weeks ago I posted about signs of Spring, one of which is sugaring season. Here in New England and Eastern Canada we make maple syrup from the sap of the sugar maple tree. You can read more about it here.
The weather has finally started to cooperate and the sap is running. Last weekend the first of the sugarhouse restaurants opened up. So yesterday Trisha and I made plans to go to South Face Farm Sugarhouse. I'd been salivating for weeks thinking about the waffle with blueberries and maple syrup that I'd have there. Since my lap band surgery, I have had lots of trouble eating breakfast, and usually manage to barely eat 1/4th of a waffle. So we planned to go for lunch. I got up early enough to have a huge cup of decaf and a breakfast bar and get some housework done. When Trisha called and said she'd be right up, I took my book and sat outside in the sun. It felt so good when the wind was quiet! The sun was dazzling and the roof was dripping. We took off on our scenic ride to Ashfield.
Worried that it might be closed when we got there, I had an alternate plan. But there were cars in the yard and it was still open. We opened the door and went in. The front door takes you past the boiler, and the steam was rising furiously and escaping out of the roof vents. The smell of this steam is heavenly. Hopefully this is what clouds smell like, if I get to heaven!
There was no sign-up sheet, as they were not too busy on their first day. We got seated right away and perused the menu over hazelnut coffees. I ordered my long-awaited waffle with blueberries on top and Trisha ordered a waffle with bacon and eggs. We oohed and ahhed as food came out of the kitchen. It didn't take long for ours to arrive. I slathered butter into every hole in that waffle then smothered it in syrup. The blueberries covered the center and dyed it all purple. That waffle absorbed the syrup and softened up to just the right consistency of butter, syrup and crispy cooked batter. Ahh, the first bite was Spring incarnate! I very carefully chewed and chewed. Heavenly. Taking my time, chewing thoroughly, putting my fork down and resting between bites, I ate the whole thing! I was so happy.
After paying at the checkout counter, we looked over the displays in the "waiting" room, then we left for our ride.
All I have to do is look at Trisha and tilt my head north and she says "Let's go!" We drove through Shelburne Falls, Colraine and into Jacksonville, Vermont. There is a little store there we like to stop at. It smells like Patchouli and is filled with beads, peace flags, jewelry, incense, tarot cards, yoga mats, India bedspreads, "smoking paraphenalia," gemstones, smudge sticks...you name it. The place takes us back to the Psychedelic Shop in 1968! We bought a few treasures and left to drive home a different way, (cause you gotta!) route 8A into Charlemont. Another little store, this one is the local bakery, deli, liquor and gift store. Another cup of coffee and a snack for the road. We chattered and laughed all day, making plans to go to Niagara Falls later in the year, telling stories about this and that. A lovely early Spring afternoon!
So, see? Spring is coming! The sap is flowing. Heaven is in the air!