So this afternoon we worked off Sunday lunch with some apple picking to try and get as much bounty inside before Hurricane Katia turned the flawless beauties into windfalls.
Mum oversees the whole operation as head of quality control. This involves a complex (and inexplicable) storage system which can only be carried out by somebody with at least 20 year’s experience, so it’s down to her.
Everybody else scrambles up the tree and on the wall to search for ‘beauties’ which are 10/10 apples. Perfection. No worm holes or bruises, but smooth, green, enormous and almost exactly spherical apples. A ‘beauty’ can only be pronounced by mum, and is often turned into a baked apple – the biggest accolade that can be bestowed upon a piece of fruit.
The cat was quite confused why everyone was in the tree. The dog tried to eat an apple, but really just licked it a lot. Everyone split into pickers and catchers in a complicated, slip-catching exercise. And then we took it in turn to put on bike helmets and header the brown, rotting apples. Don’t ask why. Families are odd.