Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Moment of Bliss - Happy Tomatoes

Today was a warm and sunny October day. Just beautiful; one of those days so perfect that they help pull you through the cold and dark winter months. I am visiting my dad in the hospital in Denver where he is recovering from major back surgery.

And I had planned to work remotely but instead I took a break from the hospital and walked to a nearby community garden. If you are picturing me climbing over the fence, you should know that Dad's physical therapist, Charlie, has a plot there and gave me the combo to the locked gate.

The community garden is a wonderfully eclectic place with random plots filled with different ideas of what consitutes a garden. Plus I love gardens in the fall. The plants continue to give and give long after the gardener has thrown in the towel (or trowel, sorry). We've had a long and warm fall, and hey - we all get tired of watering, weeding, and frankly -- how much can a person can?

I wandered through the plots, admiring all of the late season fruits and vegetables. And then I spied the most amazing pergola covered with the best grapes I have ever tasted. They tasted like champagne and had tiny seeds. So I just lay there for awhile, enjoying the filtered sunlight through the grape leaves.

After meditating on the grape-leaf-October-dappled sunlight, I roused myself and found Charlie's plot. He has a number of different heirloom tomatoes inclduing pear tomatoes and cherry tomatoes - plus a big raspberry patch.

You know how when a cherry tomato is perfectly ripe and falls off the vine on it's own? I found one today that I swear had fallen off the vine picoseconds before my arrival. It was warm from the sun and warm from the ground and when I popped it into my mouth, I almost got teary-eyed.  It was that good. It was like the perfect culmination of summer on a perfect fall day. It make me unbelievably happy.

My summer tomatoes on a feta cheese, artichoke and black olive pizza.

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