After weeks of solid rain Saturday arrived and with it a clear blue sky and sunshine; it was finally time to head down to the pumpkin patch.
The sun streamed through the fields, illuminating the pumpkins and setting them alight; bright orange flames burning in the bleak and muddy landscape. Children hurled themselves through the fields, printed wellies caked in mud, errant wheelbarrows ploughing in to the hale bales – laughter and screams hanging thick on the breeze.
Hundreds of families had descended on the field that morning, all eager to pick the best pumpkins to take home and carve. My family is smaller these days – I waded through the thick mud with just Mumchelle and briefly thought about years gone by. Grabbing a wheelbarrow we headed to the heart of the patch to scope out the best pick.
The heavy rainfall of weekends gone by made itself known – I looked at my Dr Martens in dismay as slowly but surely they became enveloped with soft mud – Mumchelle’s Vans didn’t fare much better. We walked through fields of dying vines and beautiful bright pumpkins, stopping occasionally to rummage in the wooden crates for our favourite ‘ugly’ pumpkins. (I favour the ‘goosebump’ variety).
The field was wide and expansive but just beyond it we got a peek at a field that was much less busy. With determination we waded through the thick mud to reach it. In that field the Munchkins and the ugly pumpkins were growing. These are some of my favourites to look at so we spent a quiet while just taking in the scenery and becoming absorbed in all of the wonderful different varieties.
Further down and bordered by a wall of towering corn was another field – this one was even quieter still with pristine pumpkins largely un-bothered by grubby little hands. We stayed for awhile arranging photographs and taking in the scenery. Mumchelle has become somewhat of my photographer these days and I could not be more thankful for her taking the time to understand direction with endless patience.
After a couple of hours we were done; with a trolley laden with our favourite pumpkins we set off to pay for them, the wind gently pushing us along. Another successful year at the pumpkin patch; a tradition that lives on.