Autumn always makes me nostalgic, especially with the rain New England tends to get this time of year. Lately though I haven’t been thinking about my teen years, mostly because I’ve been successfully staving off the depression that usually sets in with the decreased sunlight by massively supplementing with Vitamin D. I’ve been thinking about being a little kid.
My grandparents were much loved by everyone in their community. They had some friends in a nearby, little Maine-town, John & Karen, who hosted an Apple Cider Pressing party every fall. My family used to drive up almost every year, up until my early teens, to enjoy the fresh apple cider, apple sauce, apples, hot dogs & all kinds of delicious baked goods. This is where I first learned I hate candy corn, but I still try it every year, and it still tastes like wax. There were always kittens around to chase, and pumpkins to paint. With my recent focus on eating whole and unprocessed foods, I really miss those apple cider pressings with the fresh apple-products. I drink my Stop & Shop cider with some regret. It’s been too long for me to remember if the real deal tastes any different. At least I am fortunate enough to live close to a number of farms and apple orchards, so I could easily obtain some fresh cider with a little driving.
I miss the smell of burning leaves & leaves freshly fallen & leaves slightly rotting all over the sidewalks. I miss the sound of riding my purple bike through the huge leaf piles, letting my feet dangle and re-arrange the piles for the best riding routes. I miss being outside on a cool fall day and playing until I could take off my sweater or coat and feel perfectly warm. I have not been outside enough yet this fall.
And I really miss being 5 years old and fitting snuggly in my Didushka’s lap. I still remember what it was like to hug him, bony with a bit of an old-man belly. He always smelled like fall and pipe smoke. I miss him a lot, but I believe that his spirit is somewhere watching over his beloved “5-O’s” and that he is proud of us. Now I really want to go snuggle up and read in his recliner, which made the ~150 mile journey to my apartment and is awaiting the creation of a slip-cover, but I am at work.
Sometimes I think about what my parents will be called when they are grandparents…my mother has no Russian heritage, I cannot really imagine her as a Baba, but would my dad be a Did?