I’m not a fan of the word romp. There, I’ve said it: I’m a word snob. Romp is one of those words that makes me cringe. However, the word and I were willing to put aside our differences today and take a walk on the wild side- the countryside, that is.
My mom and I set out early this afternoon on a quest for laughs and local food- and the rural romp really delivered. I was once again struck by how many farms are in close proximity to where we live. It’s really a gift to be able to drive twenty minutes and see where your food is grown. The sheer accessibility of fresh, local produce is astounding and really makes you wonder why you wouldn’t eat locally all the time. And then you remember your love for bananas. You then realize that it is possible to be committed to eating locally whenever possible and still enjoy certain delicacies that don’t favour the extreme temperatures of Ontario. The bounty of Ontario is plentiful, however, and getting squash, beets, beans, tomatoes and apples among many other natural wonders straight from the source feels- and tastes- just wonderful.
When we got home from the romp, we enjoyed a fantastic fall dinner of a vegetarian chili-esque stew baked in an acorn squash. As the fragrant smell of sweet squash filled the house, I thought about the day and how wonderful it had been to truly enjoy the countryside, despite some rain. A year ago I would not have been able to be fully present for such an enjoyable day. I’m thankful for my newfound ability to not just look at and contemplate food but to know that I’ll be eating the fruits of our romping.
Life, it turns out, is full of opportunities like these. Opportunities to taste, to see, to hear- to experience. Chances to see asparagus plants blowing in the wind or pet a giant pig. Obviously, not every day is like today. After all, farmers can’t open their homes and workplaces to strangers each day- there is lots of work to be done to feed the hungry customers lining up to sample fresh, local produce! I was so pleased, though, to have the opportunity, today, to take part in such a fascinating concept. I loved seeing how my food is grown, and learn a bit more about something that I think is a very important step in our collective environmental future- the local food movement.