This weekend has been rather nourishing to my soul, so far. Saturday, Steve (rootbeer1) and I drove up to Elk Grove, a little south of Sacramento, to visit our friend Michael for the day. He took us to Apple Hill in the Sierra foothills east of Placerville. It was a chilly (41 degrees) and rainy afternoon, but the autumn colors that I miss so much were in beautiful display, as we drove from apple farm to apple store. I was reminded so much of upstate New York and Vermont, especially when we stopped for apple cider doughnuts. You go up to a little window with your other purchases (in our case, a dozen or so freshly-picked Golden Delicious, a gallon of cider and a ready-to-bake pie) and tell them how many doughnuts you want, and they immediately drop the batter from a funnel-like contraption into the hot oil. When they're golden brown they scoop them out and roll the hot doughnuts in granulated sugar and cinnamon. Exactly like we got at Lake Side Farm in my teenage hometown (and my mother's--she was born there) of Round Lake, 15 miles north of Albany, NY. Oh man, biting into a spicy hot apple cider doughnut, with the rain gently falling outside the open barn door, and the leaves all red and gold and peach-colored--I just about burst out crying.
We went back to Michael's house and relaxed, while the big sweetie proceeded to cook us dinner. For dessert we had the sour cream apple pie we picked up just before leaving Apple Hill. We cuddled up on the couch and watched TV and chatted for hours, and we were invited to stay over as it was so late. We slept so peacefully in the big guest bed, full of apples and memories.