Friday, September 26, 2008

Change of seasons

This morning I went out on the back porch to drink my coffee, and I noticed a familiar crispness in the air. Breathing in, it hit me . . . the first day of Fall was a few days ago. Then I looked up and saw a branch of prematurely red maple leaves, and couldn't help but smile. Fall is my favorite season, and it's here! Woo-hoo!

I love Fall! I love the dramatic color changing of the leaves, the colorful pumpkins and mums and Indian corn, the cool nights and not-so-hot days. I love getting out my "cool weather" clothes and wearing long sleeves again. I love making caramel apples and drinking hot apple cider and watching Colts football games on Sunday afternoons. I love going for long walks in the woods. I even love it when people decorate their homes and yards for Halloween, even though I would NEVER do that. 

OK, well, I'll put a pumpkin out. Or two. We'll see. :-)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

How 'bout them apples?

We moved to our neighborhood 18 months ago, six of which I was away working in Europe.  So we're still exploring. It seems like every time we go out, we find a new interesting place - especially on the roads leading outside the city. Examples of some of the neat things close by are: a Sikh temple (I mean, how many of those will you find in Indiana?), a very nice local winery (Buck Creek Winery), and a rather large and supposedly haunted community theatre (Buck Creek Playhouse). Maybe I will write about those places in future entries. But today I want to write about Anderson Orchard.

This afternoon on the way home from work, we decided to follow the red apple-shaped signs labeled Anderson Orchard. The route took us all the way to Carroll Road, where we passed an alpaca farm (no kidding!) and finally found the orchard. 

What a pleasant surprise! Anderson has several varieties of apples, including Jonagold, Gala, Granny Smith, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, and Mutsu. (They also had Buttercrisp but those have already been sold out for the season.) You can pick 'em yourself, or buy them by the half peck, peck, half bushel, or bushel. Of course, they sell apple cider. They also have an "apple slush" machine, and being the curious person that I am, I had to try it. (It was awesome!) 

Anderson also sells in-season produce. They had lots of sweet peppers today, some pumpkins, gourds, butternut squash, and green beans. And mums! They had lots of mums, in several different colors.

We bought a half peck of Gala apples for the low, low price of four dollars. If like me you're not exactly sure what a "half peck" is, well, I counted 16. We could have had a whole peck for $7, a 1/2 bushel for $13, or a whole bushel for $24. But what in the world would you do with a bushel of apples? (My Mom would make apple jelly with the peelings, and she'd put the apples in jars. I don't have those skills.)

I ate one after dinner tonight. It was the perfect blend of sweet and tart. I can't wait to eat another one. If eating an apple a day keeps the doctor away, then what happens if you eat two apples a day?


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Girl attacked by giant shrimp

It happened in the parking lot at Ella's Restaurant in Calabash, North Carolina last Tuesday night.  We'd just eaten lots of fried (Carolina style) shrimp, fish, clam strips, crabs, and oysters and everyone was quite content. As we exited the restaurant, we were surrounded by giant plastic sea creatures. One of them grabbed my 12 year-old niece. After a struggle, she escaped unharmed. It sure was a close call.

I know I'm supposed to be writing about my life in Indiana. But the fact is, I just returned to the USA 11 days ago after being gone for 6 months. I've had people to see and other places to go besides Indiana. Like the Carolinas, home of my peeps. 

But I'm back in the Hoosierland now. 

Welcome to my new blog. If you enjoyed The Wienerschnitzel Diary . . . well, OK, this one is probably not going to be that exciting. But I'll try. After all, I do have a unique angle planned: recent world traveler attempts to settle down in the middle of America. Can it be done? Stay tuned!