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I’m too old for this June 23, 2010

Posted by Toy Lady in random stuff.

Yep.  That could have been me.  Only I didn’t say “stuff.”  Sorry.

Why, you ask?

Because I, foolish old middle aged person that I am, keep thinking it would be a good idea to pick my own strawberries.

Yeah.  Not such a great idea.

As an aside – what kind of idiot goes picking strawberries – alone – and doesn’t even think to bring her iPod?  Or even a camera?

Anyway.  Do you know how strawberries grow?

About 6 inches from the ground, in rows about a foot apart.

What that means is a lot of bending and squatting – not so much standing (too low to the ground) and not so much sitting (rows too close together for my rather, um, just the rows are too close together).

So I can bend, or I can squat  to pick my berries.  Those are my choices.

PhotobucketI started out with the thought that, well, my back is stronger than my knees. (Do you ever hear that crackly sound in your knees when you go upstairs in the evening?  I know it’s not just me, because when I told the doctor about it, she even had a name for it, which I can’t recall right now.  See above about being old middle aged. )

Now back in the day, picking strawberries was child’s play – I could do it without even trying, then come back the next day and do it again.


I was picking strawberries with my mother back before it was trendy – before we cared about local produce or being “organic.”

Back then, it was just cheaper.

But back then, they also had rules – “No Children Under 13” being the main one.  I guess they figured that if you were an adult, you really didn’t need any rules – you knew how to behave yourself.

I started picking berries with my mother when I was 12.

Hey, I was tall for my age, what can I say?

So here I am, bending and stooping,  picking my berries, hoping I’m going to be able to move the morning (I was) (just barely), when along comes this woman with her two small children.  And a third in a stroller.

Remember how I said the rows were about a foot apart?  Yeah, I wasn’t exaggerating.  And you know what else?  A stroller does not roll between two rows of strawberries.  Not easily, anyway.   But if you really work at it – it’ll go.  The strawberry plants will grow back.  Or not.  Whatever.

But that’s not even the worst part!

I ask you – WHO brings their children to a STRAWBERRY FARM and packs COOKIES?  The stroller lady – and her kids – were in a field full of FRUIT, and she’s trying to get her kids to settle down . . .and have a COOKIE?


Tell me I’m not too old for this . . . stuff.

Maybe next year, I’ll just buy my berries at the market, like the rest of the old middle aged ladies.



1. Barb Cooper - June 23, 2010

That’s something that I see all the time as a mom–people bringing their children to something FOR THE EXPERIENCE and then totally missing the experience because of the photo opportunities. Or people bringing kids who are way too small to actually enjoy or remember (or eat) said experience. The worst was the time we took Jane and Ana to see Thomas the Tank Engine–the real steam train (we got to ride on him!)–and people were so angry with their children for not obeying or sitting still for the photo or whatever that the kids were sobbing and the parents totally exasperated and no one was having any fun. Um, and the point?

Exactly! If the kids remember at all, it’s about what an awful disappointment the whole thing was . . . 😥

I remember the first time I took my Surly Boy to pick cherries – he was almost 3, I think. (Maybe it was the year before – I don’t remember exactly because I didn’t feel the need to DOCUMENT the EXPERIENCE.) He had a BALL! The trees were smallish, and he, being a little boy, was good at climbing and reaching and EATING those cherries! His entire body, from that huge grin on his face, down to his shorts, was absolutely covered with cherry juice – he very quickly got the hang of spitting out the pits and FUN was had by all!

2. Barb Cooper - June 23, 2010

PS: I wish we lived closer to each other. I would TOTALLY have gone with you. I’m gimpy but who can resist the lure of strawberries that fresh? We grew our own this year but we didn’t get enough to do anything but marvel every day that three or four berries came from our own garden.

Wouldn’t that be a hoot! You with your bad foot, and me with my hips and knees. . . 😆

I gave up trying to grow strawberries myself – in order to have enough for anything, you’ve got to pick a couple each day – by the time you’ve got a nice bowl full, they’re starting to spoil. 😕

The biggest problem I have with going a-picking is that I always go a little overboard – especially when I’m by myself!

3. judy - June 23, 2010

I can so relate to the back/knees. I am saved this year from picking raspberries this year as the farm is not offering that any more! Your berries look super thought.

Thanks Jude – they are good. Not as sweet as last year, but I think it’s because it got so warm so fast. And I almost think I’d rather pick raspberries than strawberries – not quite as far to reach! 😀

4. anne - June 23, 2010

Please don’t talk about being old .. um .. middle aged (I first typed that muddle aged, which I think is also appropriate). I believe you are younger than I. But I would have gladly helped you, our strawberry season was gone weeks ago. How many did you pick, anyway??

More than appropriate, I’d say. 😕 But you know how some days you’re just more middle aged than others? Yeah, like that.

And I kind of picked 14 quarts – I get started and forget to stop. 🙄

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