travel, hike, eat. repeat.

my adventures are often on a budget… and always clumsy.

falling for fall

I went apple picking this weekend. Zan, his brother and sister-in-law and I went out to Stribling Orchard in Markham, Virginia. Stribling is a 200 year old orchard, situated in Virginia wine country, near the Blue Ridge Mountains. You can’t ask for a more stunning view. It’s the only orchard I’ve ever been to, but I’d still put money on them having the best treats. We overindulged on hot cider, apple cider donuts, apple cake and, of course, apple pie. I was tipsy and silly off sugar, before we ever had a drink. The apples were pretty picked over, but we still managed to bring home too many.

We followed the orchard visit with a trip to Naked Mountain Winery, less than two miles down the road. Besides enjoying the fun name and their “drink naked” slogan, we also loved the wine. Their tasting is $7/person for six wines or $12/person for 11. We opted for the classic tasting. Each of us had a different favorite – mine is their Viognier. We all enjoyed the Cab Franc so we got a bottle of it and a charcuterie and cheese plate to enjoy on their open-air patio.

I felt so alive at the orchard, reaching and jumping for apples just a little too far out of our reach, and at the winery, laughing with people who have quickly become close and special to me. It was a perfect fall day – the sun shining, making the crisp air feel almost warm standing in just the right place, the company warming me to my core.

Fall has never been my favorite season – that’s specially saved for the sunshine and sundresses of summer, but this year, there’s something special about it. The leaves are taking their time changing, making sure we can’t miss the beauty of it, and the weather is calm, holding back, providing us a few more weekends to retreat into the sensational colors, flavors, sounds and smells of the season.

How are you celebrating fall?

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