Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Tis the season

We've got four blueberry shrubs in our orchard and, as it's now the harvesting season, it's now a constant battle between me and the birds as to who gets to the ripening crop first each morning.

Last year the birds won hands down.

So far this season I'm winning. And the noise the songbirds (especially the aggressive wrens) make as they watch beady-eyed from the peach and pear trees. It's as if they know what I'm doing and are irritated. Sometimes, their protests are so loud, I feel as if I'm in Hitchcock's The Birds.

And what a bounty. We've got three different varieties and the shrubs are so heavy with clusters of fruit that their sinewy branches dip toward the ground. I've already collected four pints of blue berries that look as if they have been dipped in the finest of talcum powder or kissed by the morning mist.

Blueberries are a singularly American delicacy--and choc-a-bloc with vitamin C. They are delicious to eat off right off the branch or can be made into jams, pies or,my favorite, cobbler and served with vanilla ice-cream.

Off I go a-picking.

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