I am greeting a very quiet morning. There is a gentle breeze brushing past
me. The sky is a light-blue canvas filled with puffball-white scattering
clouds. My eyes are taking in the vivid shades of green that comprise the
juicy grass below that the birds pluck for seeds. On the colorful flowering
lantana shrub in that same spot, I see a variety of butterflies sharing space
with the tiny hummingbirds that are equally drawn to this bountiful magnet.
I breathe in gratitude for the blessings all around me. I anticipate a good day.
On a recent trip to PriceSmart, on impulse (point for eye-catching display) I
tossed a bag of Granny Smith apples into my shopping cart. I love apples but
rarely buy Granny Smiths (too tart) for eating. I had decided I would bake an
apple pie. After all, what’s better on a cold day than having a pie in the oven
and the house filled with the aroma of cinnamon and spices? It was a perfect
day for some comfort food to dispel the winter mood that watching the news
often brings. It was too late to begin the project that day but I was determined
to get to it the next day.
The last time I made an apple pie was probably a decade ago when our kids
were still at home and we had lots of people over for Thanksgiving or other
celebrations. I had forgotten exactly how long it takes to peel, core and slice
3 lbs. of apples. Our children used to sous-chef for me! Then of course, there
is the crust: making the dough, chilling the dough, rolling the dough while
making sure not to “over-handle” the dough! Four hours after I began, it was
finally done but now I needed to wait for it to cool completely before eating.
We did eventually eat the pie and it was worth the many hours in the making.
I had not realized when purchasing that bag of apples that making this pie
would be a trip back to 1967 Brooklyn when that was my world. Ebinger’s
Bakery around the corner from our house made and sold pies around the
holidays even though their strength was in cakes most of the year. I once
asked my mother why she didn’t bake. As a working woman with little free
time, she told me she preferred to support the economy buying goods made
locally. Yesterday on my Saturday outing, I was happy to spend my money
on products grown and sold locally, my mom’s philosophy on my mind.
My eternal optimism is challenged often lately. Despite that, I still think
that there are real reasons to be hopeful about the future. I am particularly
energized when I see or hear about the steps young people are taking to do
something to improve the world they live in. That is no small task given the
many elements (Covid-19, severe weather events, floods, fires, violence) we
witness on social media. Our interconnectedness with the world allows us to
see all the things we take for granted when everything is working properly.
Have a wonderful day and a terrific, safe week, Marietta
picture my own