Fall brings a hankering in many of us for an apple. Along with so many businesses, our favorite apple orchard in Hendersonville has closed its market place. My family has been buying apples from this family for over fifty years.
So the other day, we headed for another one in Tryon. They didn’t have the Gala apples we love so much, but they did have peach cider.
John and I enjoyed a cup of peach cider on the porch this afternoon. With the light fall breezes waving the back door to and fro, the respite was peaceful. Holding the warm mug and savoring the tart, yet sweet, flavors was made better only by the ginger snaps I dunked in the mug. (My Nanna taught me this added bonus to savoring cider or hot tea. And the taste isn’t hurt if you drop part of the cookie in the cup.)
By the beginning of the eighteenth century, peach trees had naturalized so abundantly throughout the southeastern and mid-Atlantic colonies that John Lawson said they grew as luxuriantly as weeds: “we are forced to take a great deal of Care to weed them out, otherwise they make our Land a Wilderness of Peach-Trees.”
Cider was a favorite drink during the colonial period, and all ages enjoyed it.
Upstate South Carolina has always had an abundance of peach farms, and I grew up looking forward to peach season. From cobblers to peach preserves, Mother made sure that we enjoyed this fruit, both in and out of season.
As I inhaled the flavors from my cup, I realized that the combined smell of fruit and spices would have also beckoned everyone to the fireplace in a one room cabin. Good things in life don’t change, but we need to remember to choose them. A safe harbor of fellowship can be found on a porch or around a fireplace; the century doesn’t matter. It’s the people we are making the memories with who are the most important.
“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.” C. S, Lewis