Last weekend while Kait was off Secret Supper‘ing in Nebraska I was tagging along with my husband on assignment in New Hampshire. Had I known we were going to meet and see one of my favorite artists, Strand of Oaks, perform I would’ve been most excited about that, but as it were I fixated on all the food we might eat. If you love food and city living but find it exhausting at times (yup and yup) New Hampshire is actually the perfect place to go. For me it’s less of a “get away" and more of a chance to “get back to." Not much to plan and distract, but if I can slow down enough I find plenty to take in.
Being from the similarly rural, mountainous land of upstate New York I feel instantly at home in New Hampshire, especially it’s beautiful Lakes Region. You never know what you might find along a winding country road: spontaneous clearings with breath taking mountain views, road side egg or veggie stands, and, perhaps most rewarding of all, orchard-side ice cream spots.
Along Route 28 in Pittsfield, New Hampshire there’s a solitary sign reading “Appleview Orchards" and an arrow pointing towards Upper City Road. Travel around the area for a few hours and you’ll learn that each road stretches on for miles, sometimes hours, so the lack of a mile marker or estimated distance can be daunting.
Persist past the abandoned farm houses and collapsed barns for long enough, though, and you’ll come upon a four-for, Appleview Orchards. Winding road, spontaneous beautiful view, egg stand across the street AND, of course, ice cream. Orchard side ice cream. Cheap, delicious ice cream. With local soda. And cute baby farm animals. And patio rocking chairs perfect for enjoying said view. They give you way too much peach or moose tracks or peppermint patty, as if they realize that without the bait you might rush on to the next activity or stop before fully taking it all in like you should. The air is somehow sweeter, like the impermanence of summer has crystalized just long enough to breath in.
We chuck our napkins and reverse across the crunching gravel as time quickens again. I remember the wistful look that crossed Strand of Oak’s face the night before as he talked about being in New Hampshire, asking “What the hell am I doing living in that city?"