Lying on my bed in the middle of the afternoon, feeling the breeze come through the open door to the balcony and reading uninterrupted for several hours.
Not setting an alarm and being woken up by the sound of a grumpy and insistent jay.
Having a spontaneous skype call with a friend in the middle of the day.
Taking a calm evening walk lost in thought as grey clouds slowly fill the sky and being cooled by the thick raindrops falling lazily down on my way home.
Walking through rows of trees laden with apples and pears, carefully choosing the fruit that look ripe and unspoilt, then turning them gently upside down until they break off neatly into my hand. Filling my tote bags full of them, as the smell of rotting fruit wafts up from the grass, black and orange butterflies and wasps happily gorging themselves at my feet.
Reserving a time-slot and popping on my face-mask to go see a photography exhibition and being able to linger in front of the snapshots I like best.
Exploring the Beatrixpark at night and searching for the perfect spot, away from the light pollution, to watch lightning majestically rip through the sky.
When life gives you tiny little apples from the garden, make apple sauce.
The act of peeling multitudes of these small apples is perfect for being in the moment. You can’t rush otherwise you peel away half the apple, you need to focus because there are spoiled bits that need to be carefully chopped off, you need to accept that it will take the time it takes… The result is totally worth it: a delicious and sweet compote de pommes and a quiet mind.
Thanks to my fellow apple-picker and hand model Helena.
In a country where there it can be tricky to buy organic fruit that hasn’t been flown half-way across the world, there is so much joy in picking our own fruit:) We cycled to Fruittuin van West over the weekend and picked about 10kg of organic apples and pears, and a kilo of red-currants.
Did we overdo it? Maybe just a little… I know we’ll have no trouble finishing them, slowly but surely, and I’m looking forward to our menu for the next weeks: oven-baked apples, red-currants with yoghurt, apple cake and more as inspiration comes to us
Spent a lovely morning last weekend with Paolo picking raspberries and apples at Fruittuin van West, a beautiful organic farm in Amsterdam-West where you can go to pick your own fruit (local and seasonal – hooray!) . There is a lovely dynamic atmosphere, and I like that they share very openly in their newsletters about their fight against pests and the methods they use, as it gives a realistic idea of the challenges of organic cultivation.
Searching through the raspberry bushes to find the ripe fruit, holding them softly between my fingers and pulling lightly to pick them without crushing them, was the perfect exercise in mindfulness.
We walked through row after row of apple trees laden with tempting fruit and picked to our heart’s content, coming home with 4 kilos of appels next to our kilo of raspberries.
Don’t they look delicious?! (Needless to say that as I write this, the raspberries are already long gone, we enjoyed them ‘au naturel’, with yoghurt and in a delicious apple and raspberry cake!)