Late yesterday afternoon we stopped at the farmer's market. Just inside the door we found a display of local strawberries. I stood in front of the flats and inhaled the scent of summer, of my mother's homemade jam, of weeks spent in early summer, picking strawberries to earn pocket money while I was in high school.
Husband asked, "Do we want strawberries?"
"Smell them," I said. "Yes we want strawberries."
As we stood in line with our purchases, I realized this was the first time this summer I'd seen local strawberries. It seems late in the year to me. But things have been busy, maybe I just haven't noticed.
Husband pointed out the display of scones and tea biscuits on the other side of the strawberry pallets. "Strawberry shortcake? We haven't had any yet this year."
But if we were going to have Strawberry Shortcake, we were going to do it right. I ducked out of line to get a carton of whipping cream from the dairy case, but left the scones and tea biscuits where the were. If I'm making strawberry shortcake, I'm making homemade shortcake biscuits.
Of course, this meant the evening I had envisioned would not happen. I had thought I would go out for a walk, then take my book out to the yard and try out my new hammock. Instead, I spent the evening in the kitchen.
As I prepared the berries, I found myself wanting to rhapsodize over the ruby strawberry-ness of them; to describe the works of art that were revealed as I sliced the berries to discover the stripes of pink and crimson inside. I breathed in the smell of fresh baked biscuits and strawberries. It was not a bad way to spend an evening.
I am not a writer, I am a computer programmer. I will have to leave the elegant prose to Nigella.
On the upside, I've got strawberry shortcake.