The last full week in October (we’ll have a partial week leading up to and ending with Halloween) was noteworthy in many ways. Here in Leelanau County – in my part of it, anyway – we had our first hard frost overnight Tuesday-Wednesday and woke to a transformed world. But after that, temperatures did not stay in the 20s, but began to rise, and by Saturday we were well launched into a beautiful Indian summer, with plenty of fall color left for residents and visitors.
|Bookstores make for odd bedfellows|
Writer and radio host Aaron Stander interviewed two authors who have graced the premises of Dog Ears Books, Benjamin Busch and Lynne Rae Perkins. Both writers gave outstanding interviews, and I was proud to speak and write of them in the possessive. Lynne Rae quoted me on the air, which was an extra kick, and Ben had some very important things to say about Iraq. (Follow that "two authors" link to hear both radio interviews. For an unedited version of Ben's thoughts, see the October 2014 issue of Harper's Magazine.) Meanwhile, at the bookstore, Ice Caves of Leelanau and Nuts to You continued to be bestsellers, and I got the first of Ken Scott’s 2015 Leelanau calendar, something those of us here in the county all anticipate eagerly each year.
On Friday, three members of my family and a friend who’s become part of the family arrived for a weekend visit. In honor of my mother’s and my son’s birthdays earlier in the month (even though my son does not eat sweets, including cake), I gathered up my courage and made the fresh tomato cake from Jayne Robinson’s wonderful book, The Cake Chronicles. My rendition is not the most photographic in the world, but I assure you, Jayne, it tasted great! One person in particular requested a very large piece and then said of the spatula, “You’re not going to throw that in with the dirty dishes, are you? Hand it over!” My sister commented on the fact that we could actually taste the fresh tomatoes – and I must say to anyone who doubts this makes for a good-tasting cake, that it is a delicious cake, very rich with brown sugar, dates and raisins, and of course the cream cheese frosting.
|Frosted 2-layer cake|
|Piece of cake|
|Left after first night|
My son and I got out early Saturday morning with Sarah on one of the season’s most spectacular days. Really, I’d say Saturday was downright perfect, with balmy temperature and bright sunshine and plenty of fall color all around. That afternoon my mother and sister took a color tour of their own, and we all had a rendez-vous at the farm later on.
Sunday was my day to play with family: breakfast together at the farm, long walk with Sarah and my sister, color tour and visit to Dennos Museum with mother, sister, and son, sandwiches and pie at Shine Cafe at Horizon Books (and complete tour of bookstore, naturally) before another rendez-vous, six strong, to attend the a focus group premiere showing of our friend George Colburn's documentary, "Navajo Code Talkers: In Their Own Words," at downtown Traverse City's State Theatre.
My family wound up our wonderful, event-filled day with a delicious Italian meal around the corner from bookstore and theatre. Cannoli for Monday morning's breakfast? Sybaritic!
On a serious note, I will have another post soon on one of the major topics of conversation, reading, and viewing over the weekend: What do we mean by "warrior"?