09.11.23 — Travel

Autumn in Williston

Our trip across the US border from Canada had taken us not into Vermont, the state we were headed to, but rather to New York State. Unfortunately this trip wouldn’t be seeing me visit New York City nor Buffalo as I did last year, so we’d to head east once we were on US soil.

This wasn’t before a celebratory stop to grab some snacks and milkshakes, though. Megan and Mallory took us to Stewart’s Shop, a magical place where we could have any ice cream flavour made into a huge milkshake that the guy at the counter left in the big cups they come out of the mixer in. I got an apple crumble one and it was divine!

With most of our daily calories now consumed, the three of us hopped back in the car and over to the border with Vermont, a trip which took us over the waters of the lovely Lake Champlain. As we crossed over, I began to catch a glimpse of what I’d come to see: the gorgeous autumnal colours that can be found across the northern US.

We then passed a sign which read “Leaf peepers: eyes on road”. I asked what a ‘leaf peeper’ was, and it turns out that it’s what the locals call the people that come to Vermont at this time of year to see the foliage in all its colourful glory. I was a leaf peeper!

When I further quizzed Megan about the sign, it turns out that people get so distracted by the colourful trees that there’s a rise in road accidents at this time of year. Megan wasn’t going to fall foul of such temptations, though, and we soon rocked up at her parents’ house in Williston, my home for the rest of my stay.

Leaf peepers: eyes on road.

It was wonderful to see Maureen and Terry again, and I’ve to thank them right off the block for hosting me in their lovely home. I unpacked my stuff, rested a bit after our weekend in Montreal, and then I was soon downstairs and helping Maureen prepare some potato salad for the arrival of all the guests who’d been invited over for an evening meal.

All of Megan’s friends who I’d met the year before then arrived and we all had a lovely catch up. Terry fired up the barbecue and made some delicious skewers and hot dogs, all of which we enjoyed in the unseasonal warm weather out on their back porch. It was an absolutely delightful evening!

The next day I was up bright and early for work, which thanks to the time difference meant that I was done by midday. This meant I could head back down to the garden and join Maureen for a chat over a lunch made of leftovers from the previous night’s barbecue.

Once she’d finished work, Megan came over with Mallory for the three of us to go on a little wander before we headed out for more evening activities. We took the family dog, Ellie, and walked up to the farm shop near their home as the sun began to slowly set.

Here’s the three girls on their way to the farm shop.

This turned out to be a very aesthetically pleasing trip, as we arrived to find the little wooden farm shop surrounded by pumpkins, squashes, and other seasonal produce. There were hundreds of pumpkins dotted around, amongst them these warty ones which it turns out they call ‘warty goblins’. Hilarious!

It was hard to take a bad photo when surrounded by such beautiful sights.

Once Megan finally managed to entice me inside the shop, I spent a while perusing the odd wares, from rock candy to maple sugar – the latter of which I picked up to take back to Madrid with me. I was also introduced to another little pick-me-up in the form of a tiny plastic straw full of honey, which I bought and chewed on as we walked home.

We’d also picked up an apple crumble (or ‘crisp’ as they call it) for the evening’s dessert, so we took that over from Maureen and Terry’s place and over to Breen and Aaron’s. They’d invited us over for a meal at theirs, a meal which would then be followed by an evening watching ‘The Bachelor’. In the end, I can’t decide if it was better or worse than ‘The Bachelorette’, which I was forced to watch last year whilst in Williston too!

I was enchanted by the autumn leaves in the afternoon sun.

The meal of turkey lasagne was absolutely delicious. It came accompanied by some garlic bread that Megan put a lot of love into making, as well as some cheese and homemade crackers that Breen had whipped up before we arrived. She’s a dab hand!

It was an evening of fun and giggles as we all gave a running commentary of our opinions of the decisions that the bachelor made during this first episode of the new season. I also particularly appreciated the company of Libby, Breen and Aaron’s dog, as well as their cat, whose name as far as I can work out is just ‘Cat’.

Full of food and tired after a long day, I then had a good night’s kip. This was just as well, as the next day we’d plenty to get up to: but I’ll leave that for next time!