boone county, il
Last week when we were bunking in Stonypoint, András came back from a 50-mile ride with his water bottle full of tiny, iridescent wild raspberries. They were unlike any I’d ever seen, but what impressed me more than their shimmering beauty was András clever trick for getting them home to me from the top of Bear Mountain.
This morning, at home with my family, my dad and I geared up our bikes and set out for a ride along our old route around my hometown. Half-way through our ride we came to the top of a steep hill and nature rewarded us with bushes full of wild blackberries along the bike path. We parked our bikes and filled our mouths with the sweet bursting berries, but I couldn’t stand the thought of everyone back home missing out. Visions of cast-iron blackberry pie consumed me, but we had no way to get the berries home.
Then I remembered András clever trick, and was all-too-willing to share it with my Dad.
“If we empty our water bottle, we can use it to carry the berries home,” I said. I reached for our shared water bottle and started to empty it into my mouth.
“Never throw good water away,” Dad said. “Especially on a bike ride on a 90-degree day! And besides, they’ll get all smooched.”
I took one look at Dad in his white collared shirt and lace-up shoes and realized that a man who won the good grooming award in 8th grade probably wouldn’t like the idea of juicy berries knocking around in his water bottle all the way home.
So, I forwent the luscious blackberry pie and ate what we could on the spot. Luckily we spent the afternoon at the Boone County Fair, where prize-winning pie wasn’t hard to come by. God bless America, and lattice-top blackberry pies.