Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Out Ramping Around

Today was beautiful. I thought a lot about what photo I should post because I really was just happy for the sunshine. I spent the day outside in a t-shirt. Way to go spring! I went to a nearby park in order to harvest ramps. Ramps are a wild onion that grow in sandy, shady areas on hillsides. Christopher and I went searching for ramps this past Sunday with little luck. We found one patch that had some baby ramps, but nothing to speak of. We probably harvested one portion on Sunday and split the portion between us for dinner. The only way I had, had ramps before was pickled. Not a big fan. Maybe a bad batch, maybe just because I am not a big fan on pickling. But after I consumed my half portion of sautéed ramps in butter, I was eager to venture out for more. So today I strapped on my boots, brought a digging spoon, and hiked into the forrest. I looked up to the top of the mountain and knew that's where I had to be, so I tiptoed on a balancing tree across a small river (or big stream), and made my way up the steep side of the mountain that unfortunately didn't have a path. After huffing and puffing my way to the top I sat on a stump and retrieved my water bottle. I surveyed the area and saw a small patch of green in the distance. I hauled my tired self up and slowly made my way toward the patch, hoping for the best. Hard work does pay off; I was rewarded. The small green patch I had seen from a distance turned out to be a big green patch of ramps! I started digging and filled one whole grocery bag with medium sized ramps. Satisfied, I figured I would just stroll through the woods enjoying the fresh air. I started down the other side of the mountain and realized that the big patch I had just foraged from was not big at all. The whole side of the mountain was covered in delicious ramps and I filled three whole bags. It made me so happy to be able to enjoy the fresh air while harvesting some nourishment. It reminded me of my childhood days when I spent many hours outside in the woods feeling one with nature. I was the only person out there. I took in the smells and the sounds. A scurry from a chipmunk, the buzz of a bee, the rustle of the trees. It was wonderful. 

Very often I get discouraged because of the way things often go wrong for me. Sometimes it seems that nothing will go right. It's almost as if I am expecting the car to break down after I find out I forgot my phone at home. It's not far off. After climbing up a steep slope today, I was rewarded with a valley of happiness. It really gives me hope. Maybe the slope I am climbing right now is just really steep, I can't wait to find out what's on the other side. 

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