What a day! What a weekend! It was absolutely beautiful outside, dreamy autumn days. I was very occupied putting my next newsletter together. I am so new at all this, so it takes me forever. Hours and hours. Working on the newsletter requires great patience on my part. I don’t really have a teacher or tutor, so I just bumble along. By trial and error (repeated dozens of times), I finally get it. I was having major problems getting my links to work and then formatting text, photos and design is another whole issue I had to deal with. I still need to send out test drives and then will be ready to launch my newsletter #2.
We left Ocean Shores early this morning, drove back to Seattle to drop off the cat, and then picked up Barbara and Denise and headed out to Don and Simone’s on Camano Island.
As we left Ocean Shores, we marveled at the first frost of the year! At 7 a.m. it was 37 degrees out! As we headed east, it started to warm up. Rick kept pulling over to get some beautiful shots of horses in frosted fields enveloped in mist and herons hunched on posts reflected in water, old fishing boats in the background.
Later, once we arrived on Camano, we were greeted by Don, Simone, Annie-the-Cairn-Terrier, and Don and Simone’s long time friend Janet! We immediately headed out to Camano Fruit Orchard. We had heard about Otto, the owner of the orchard, for years! What an amazing fellow! He has definitely created a piece of paradise.
When Otto first came to America in the 60’s from his native Switzerland, he was dismayed to discover there were only THREE varieties of apples here! He immediately put himself to the task of collecting various kinds of apple trees. He now grows over 230 varieties of apples. He also has many kinds of pears, grows figs and kiwis. All his gardening is organic. He uses blood meal, which hangs from trees in nylon stockings, to keep the deer at bay. Otto also collects honey from his hard working bees, and makes/sells apple and pear cider. We bought apples, cider, and honey! The place was hopping! People coming and going, buying and hauling off Otto’s organic fruit! Otto does not own a computer and has no need for one. All his business is done by word of mouth. And the vivacious 72 year old Otto is full of wisdom and knowledge. He shared generously with us all. He is also a gourmet cook and taught us how to grill figs!
I learned so much from Otto today, everything from hanging blood meal from a stocking tied to a tree as deer repellent to grilling figs to how to prune my fig trees. Today I learned that figs are one of the most nutritious fruits and that kiwis come in second (according to Otto). And I also came to a firmer realization that if you really love what you do and focus on that one dream and pour your entire heart and soul into it year after year, all your dedication pays off. You become a master and the fruit of your labor is overwhelmingly abundant and beautiful! Otto is living proof of that!
CAMANO FRUIT ORCHARD (all organic)
3218 S. Camano Drive, Camano Island, WA 98282
(You might want to call before you go to make sure Otto is there and has plenty of fruit, cider, and honey for you!)
These first six photos were taken by Rick. Others by me.