If I'd blogged yesterday as planned I would have posted this picture of a tomato and captioned it something like - the very last, first tomato of the Southern Australian season. For it seems like everyone around us has been picking them already for weeks.
But I skipped yesterday's blog and this beautiful specimen smelled, felt and tasted as good as we'd been dreaming it would. There are a few slowly ripening behind it, but I'd say we're still a while away from bucket loads.
And in case you are wondering, my eighth day of the new year was a crazy busy one and I just didn't get the chance. I did have a bit of guilt at times, I did wonder if missing one day rendered the whole exercise worthless, I did consider posting something quick and crappy just before midnight last night, and I did contemplate the possible flaw in my character that I had barely lasted a week before slipping up.
I thought about the lovely lady sitting in hospital for six weeks who had written to me, I thought about my Mum and how I'd missed the chance to wish her a public happy birthday, I thought of how there'll be a gap in my record when I look back next year and I thought about what I'd say if anyone asked.
But then each time the thought came up over the last few hours of the day, I made myself remember that the best thing about my blog is that it's my blog and it's a record of my life and that sometimes my life is just too full to squeeze one more 'have to' or 'should' into it. And the best possible thing I can do is tell all those little niggling negative feelings to get lost and go back to living my life and get back to blogging about my life when next convenient.
Which is now, 3.26 in the afternoon of the ninth.
So here goes.
On the morning of the ninth day of the new year we crossed a wide, brown paddock.
And found our one apricot tree. A tree we planted about 10 years ago but has never grown fruit.
We pulled over a ladder and picked those warm, juicy beauties.
The birds had started feasting well before we arrived so we left those they'd started to them.
It was hot work in the sun and we had to take lots of breaks to rest and sample the wares.
Somewhere in the back of my mind I have a childhood memory of picking and eating apricots straight from the tree until our bellies were full to bursting. I can't seem to place the when and the where but the feeling is so sweet and fragrant and delicious.
I believe that apricots are one of those things that once you taste them straight from the tree, you can never go back to shop-bought again. The flavour, the texture, the feeling - there's nothing quite like it.
Heaven in a basket.
One basket-full is what we picked this year, although there is already talk of planting more.
I think we'll eat most of them fresh, dehydrate a tray or two and bake some into a cake. Yum!
So there we go, all caught up and back on track.
Sending lots of juicy summer loving out to you wherever you are.
Love Kate xoxo