Back Home from Maple Country

Come autumn – which by the way is in the air in green mountain country for clusters of trees, large and small, have started turning shades of rust and gold – and Vermont shall be aflame with brilliant oranges, golds and vermillion that should make the mouth hang open in sheer surprise. Here I go by my reaction, yours can be more muted or elegant depending upon your personality. I am also going by the photos I have seen of that colour-drenched landscape so far, yet I can imagine, and imagination is the bedrock of true pleasure. Those trees laden with colour and promises of what is to come showed up in fits and starts as we wound up and down, turned corners and crawled around the countryside in Vermont in our car.  It was cold, around 12-14ºC, and we were shivering in the late evenings because a jacket can do only so much for you in mountainous climes.

When the seasons change everything seems to fall in place so effortlessly. It is amazing how our moods are tempered by the advent of beauteous spring and autumn. That hint of softness in the sunshine, the trees responding in their own ways, wearing leaves or shedding them by and by, the pleasant nip in the air, … it is just the time for hatching plans.

We made plans too. For the trip. Three days and two nights are not a lot but one whole day at your command? You know what difference it can make. But what do you know, ‘the best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men’ will go ‘aft agley’, so with precision ours went awry. Plans of hiking and making acquaintances with the boys of the forest fell through spectacularly. The second day of the trip, designated as hiking day, turned out to be trapped-in-a-washing-machine kind of a day. We were caught inside our car, and it came down relentlessly, that rain. We ran in and out of country stores in the small villages to soak up the warmth of cafes and antiques.

The mountains however showed up in that avataar which you can admire if you have a romantic buried deep inside you. Mist curling along the ridges of the smoky green hills, trails of it floating along the middle, rivers rippling with water that looked steely cold, the solitary man fly fishing in those waters in the dark grey evening, …it was like we had been whisked into another world.

Soggy but charming sights
Green and grey
The man fly fishing in a river somewhere around the village of Stowe
In country stores in Stowe…
…we met some bow-tie sporting bears who have a weakness for tartans and some casual tee loving ones too please.
The sombre one. They were for sale FYI.  I was thrilled till I learnt the price for the smallest bear. Just some $250. My husband would not obviously countenance such ridiculous demands so I had to let it go, a tad ungracefully.

Then we tasted the land. In generous lashings of maple syrup upon buttermilk pancakes, the fluffiest and best I have had in a long time at American diners which specialise in breakfasts. I could see why everyone in the diners and cafes were larger than life. They appreciate the goodness of pancakes and maple syrup laden with vanilla cream and butter. It came back to me then, Javon’s ultimatum, that I would slowly grow thicker around the edges. One day I would wake up and see a big reflection in the mirror. Thus it was that I got to impose a measure of self-control.

Now we have come back home with treasures from maple country. A bottle of maple syrup that is so flavourful that I can vouch for it with every fibre in my being, a small cookbook that doles out recipes on how to bake and cook maple-laden goodies, books acquired off shelves of antique stores, preserves and chilli butters and gourmet crackers and it seems just right that we are home now. To take a break from a weekend of going berserk and to plan more such weekends.



112 thoughts on “Back Home from Maple Country

      1. You have such brainwaves. As for baked goods and cummerbund *sigh
        I live in hope that such inventions do come to fruition soon. For me, such attempts are in vain. Any baked good that does not carry the requisite amount of flour, eggs, butter and cream – it shall not pass muster. Here comes Dotty to test out the mettle of those Texan door frames!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I love when plans fall through and force you to create an entirely new vacation on the fly! Perhaps I enjoy it more when those plans aren’t mine, but still 😉

    The diner breakfast is an American treasure, for sure. And you couldn’t make maple scones with that bear, so I think in the end you chose wisely! Give us a call if you need a hand with those maple-laden goodies 🙂

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    1. Hahaha I shall share some recipes from the cookbook for sure. For now I have to call a halt to my mindless indulging in the goodnesses of these sinful diners. Can I whisper that I love Denny’s? It was my first experience of a diner in your land and my husband is quite amused at my reaction but I cannot lie.
      I would readily bake some maple scones for that sweet boy if only he were mine. Sigh. Missed opportunities. xx

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  2. If I could only put my hand through the monitor and grab that Maple Leaf bottle of liquid delight, I would! Sorry, sometimes my impulses overtake any sense of decency that I may pretend to have 😉 Anyways, the photos are beautiful and the bears are too cute. The rain looks so refreshing and your meal is making my stomach growl. Lovely post. – Neek

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    1. Thank you for the lovely words, Neek.
      That only means we can have a tug-of-war through the screen 😉 Or if you bribe me sufficiently, I might let go of that bottle of pure delight. Sometimes I gush too much over food methinks. It probably does reveal my glutton genes (as Adi refers to them).
      I like people who know what they want and are ready to fight for it. xx

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Even though I love the poetic nature of that pitter patter, Theresa, I like it more when I am inside a room tucked into a couch with a book. But well why should I complain when I did get drenched and misty vistas 🙂 Amen to the skies leaking in your part soon! xx

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  3. Your photos are amazing…we were in Stowe last month for a few days and my photos have nothing on yours. You must return with proper attire and better weather, the hike up Mount Mansfield is quite spectacular!

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    1. Thank you Annika, but there you can see why we were immensely frustrated to be caught up inside when we could have been huffing and puffing up Mansfield. But well another time. I have some more photos of Stowe which I shall disgorge in time. But the fact that you got to do the hike is enough. Who cares about drenched photos 😛

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  4. Lovely captures and stories as alwaysl! Glad that you had a nice time! Shall I let u in on a secret? Four years since we left India and I have never ever tasted Maple syrup! I have never even tasted pancakes!!! Just one of those feelings when you are hesitant to risk a meal by trying something new… 😉 Got to do it soon. Maybe i will love it and have just wasted four years of my life not enjoying a delicious food combo..sigh! xx

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    1. What what what! I wish you could taste this maple syrup from Vermont. Canadians would have my throat but listen it is delectable. The flavours, oh. I could really gush on till you want to club me but really you have got to go get a bottle of maple syrup and whisk up a batch of pancake batter at home, with buttermilk of course, for some fluffy beauties. Then a pot of melted butter/clotted cream and maple syrup drizzled over a batch. You will possibly hate for urging you after 😀 But I am a brave one. I shall risk it. xx

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  5. Vermont is breathtaking in the fall- even with the rain. There is nothing quite like a New England autumn. Even for a short trip its good to be back home, or for a first time visit!
    Your photos are definitely postcard worthy! Thank you for sharing! 🙂

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    1. Hello fellow darter, I did hop over to your blog and read about you. Thank you for the lovely comment. I am yet to see its fall beauty but I cannot wait. Postcard worthy! Why that is high praise, yet here I am gathering it and feeling rather chuffed. x

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Aw yay! I saw the maple syrup glass leaf in your thumbnail and knew immediately that you had visited Vermont! I love Vermont! Actually went to school in Burlington and it was an amazing time. Hope I can make it up there again during the Fall to see all the colorful leaves! 🙂 Looks like you had a great trip!

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    1. Heh thanks Kim. I know that bottle is the perfect touristy acquisition and the occasional touristy indulgence cannot hurt surely 😉 You are lucky to have gone to school in Vermont. It is idyllic. I do intend to make sure I see the fall colours in Vermont or at least somewhere in New England. Cheers.


  7. I have just woken up with an empty refrigerator so that breakfast plate is making me drool. Rain does make everything look pretty in its own way but then that torrential rain is a complete spoiler. Good you had cute bears for company xx
    Ps:- for some weird reason WP had you unfollowed so you might find a notification of a new old follower 😀

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      1. Well how did you guess that?! My refrigerator is never empty otherwise, definitely not for breakfast. Lol. Yes, returned yesterday from a not relaxing but a very nice trip to a couple of Polish cities. Xx

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  8. Wow beautiful pictures! Cold, but must have been wonderful! Love maple syrup with pancakes 😄
    We have friends in Canada and they occasionally come over and bring us maple syrup in a leaf bottle 😄
    Have a nice day! 😊

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