When we left South Louisiana the temperatures were still in the 90's. As we drove north to western NY, we lived in a rarified state in our vehicle, not realizing the changes in the outdoor atmosphere,only getting out occasionally for gas fillups, etc. And speaking of that, when we started out we were paying $2.89 a gallon at the pump. By the time we got to the NYS border, we had been paying somewhere around $2.39, which was a pleasant surprise. (On our way back down south, we were shocked and thrilled to see gasoline as low as $1.91 at some places.) I remembered how high the NYS Thruway gas station prices are, so we stopped near the Penna/NYS border to tank up before entering NY. Across the street from the gas station was this pretty fruit stand. The whole setting, including the light chill in the air said, "Fall". We went to investigate and see if we could find any fresh cider; we knew it had to be there. Last Fall Cappy had taken great pleasure in his first glassful with the obligatory cake doughnut, so we considered it now to be a tradition that just couldn't be passed up. Other customers were busily loading baskets of juicy grapes, pears, peaches, and other fruits freshly harvested, into their cars and trucks, quietly talking amongst themselves about their finds in the market.
It was a wonderful place to shop and visit. They had candles and jams and jellies and homemade candies and cookies, and many other things too numerous for me to try to remember, but it was great. The people running it couldn't have been more friendly. We were having a warm conversation with one gal at the cash register, who was talking with Cappy about Louisiana...he was wearing a baseball cap with a New Olreans Saints Logo. In mid-sentence we heard a tinny-sounding song start playing, "When the Saints Go Marching In"...it was her cell phone ringing...what are the odds?
We bought a small basket of assorted prettily arranged fruits and nuts, and as they had no cake doughnuts that day, Cappy downed his apple cider and a couple of sugar cookies that looked like my grandmother used to make, years and years ago, cut with a ruffled edge. We hadn't really taken time to eat a proper breakfast or lunch, and by now it was about 3:30 in the afternoon, so we drove on into NYS stuffing handfuls of grapes, peaches, pears and apples into our mouths, still trying to sing along with Jim Croce's CD song, playing Photographs and Memories, for we surely were creating some that day.