Socially Distant Strawberries

The alarm clock went off at the crack of dawn.  The woman who answered the phone at the berry farm the day before had said that they had been very busy the first week that the strawberries were ready for picking.  (I guess strawberries are the new toilet paper.)  I wanted to be there when they opened so threw on my shorts and shirt and got a move on.

The berry farm was doing a good job with the covid restrictions: everyone got a good spray of sanitizer on their hands before and after going into the field, masks were strongly encouraged, containers brought from home were strictly forbidden and they put us in every other row of berries.  And we were told in no uncertain terms that this year we could not sample berries as we picked.   I had thought I would be irritated by wearing a mask while picking berries, but soon my knees and ankles took my mind off it.  It was a beautiful morning and I found that none of the restrictions bothered me at all – although I will admit that with folks in every other row, I wasn’t able to eavesdrop on other folks’ berry patch conversations like usual!

The berries were great and I managed to overfill my two flats just as I got to the end of my row.  Having gotten there so early, I got home early and had 14 jars of jam and 8 quarts of frozen berries processed by 10:30!  I had been worried that the pandemic would wreck my annual strawberry routine, but the berry farm did a great job of getting safely on with business!

When was the last time you set your alarm clock?  Do you even HAVE an alarm clock?  What kind?

38 thoughts on “Socially Distant Strawberries”

  1. i set alarm clocks all the time to remind me of meetings and when stuff is done in the oven

    i have a daily meeting with a business partner at 1130 to go over stuff and an alarm is my prompt

    i don’t use one to get up in the morning usually and i don’t have the old clock radio on my bedside table. like so many areas smartphones that are attached to us like fingernails have taken the place of the old box
    kodak camera and film are gone
    clocks are gone
    watches are gone
    cassette recorders are gone
    cd players are gone
    to do lists are gone
    it’s all on the phone
    want ads on facebook marketplace and craigslist has almost buried newspapers
    news on all sorts of online sources has made daily papers a blip instead of a daily requirement
    the new things will be distance measure space and contact aps
    the smart phones out there are such a vital part of life today it’s nuts
    but it’s true

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I got to tell you Tim that you have given me a revelation this morning. I have never once, in all of my years, thought of the timer on the oven as an alarm clock. Although I guess it really is. So if you don’t count the timer on the oven then I haven’t turned on the alarm clock since March 14.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice work, vs. Where do you go to pick strawberries?

    Unlike tim, I do have a bedside clock radio. I rarely set it, though. I think the last time I needed to be somewhere at a specific time was on March 17th when I had my second cataract surgery. My next outing is on Friday, sometime between 8 AM and noon I need to be at the local Farmer’s Market. I think I can manage that without setting an alarm.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I go to Lorences Berry Farm outside of Northfield. Over the decades I have tried several strawberry operations around the Twin Cities and I find that Lorences is just the best. The berries are good, plentiful and it is well run. I also pick raspberries there later in the summer.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I set the alarm on my phone every weekday morning for 6:30. Husband gets up at 6:15 to make the coffee, so his phone alarm wakes me up before mine does.

    We are picking strawberries now from the garden. They are nice this year. I freeze them. We have so many left from last year that we are giving lots of this years s crop away to neighbors. The children from next door love to help us pick.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    My raspberries are loaded with berries this year, probably coming on around July 4. Tomorrow we pick our sour cherries which are also loaded. With the cherries, they must be pitted, then frozen immediately.

    I have my phone alarm and a radio alarm by my bed, but I rarely use either. I awaken by 6:15-6:30am.

    July 4th we are going to Iowa to visit my mother. I predict that a cherrie pie will be our offering for a picnic.

    Liked by 4 people

        1. I have one called a cherry chomper. It works well with bing cherries, but the little tart nanking cherries I grow are too small for it. I’d like to find something that works on those.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I tried to find a picture of my cherry potter to see if it had a name, but couldn’t even find a picture. It’s a pretty straightforward plunger.

          I had a friend ask me yesterday if I had a good strawberry huller and I had to tell her that I’ve never found one that I liked – I do all of my strawberry processing with my little knife.

          Liked by 1 person

  5. I have an alarm clock. I generally only need it on election days, when I have to be at the polling place at 6:00. This year they want us there at 5:30, and I’m not sure why, but I suppose it means they’ve added plexiglass barriers or something like that, and we’ll need extra time to deal with the new reality.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. We’ve been talking about elections at our townhall. We think we can spread out enough for voting. The issue is the people waiting to vote. We’ve reserved a tent for November to put up outside so at least people can wait outside under a tent (with sidewalls) if the weather is bad.

      I haven’t heard about plexiglass yet; don’t know if the county will provide them for us or if we need to make our own. All three of us have applied for mail-in ballots.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. I have a cat that I swear wears a paw watch. She was overweight when adopted so we feed her every 6 hrs-no ad lib food. She asks for food within 5 minutes of the scheduled time. So who needs an alarm?!
    Whenever I do set an AM radio alarm, I always wake up 20 min before so end up getting up and turning it off. Must admit the summer AM sun helps but do this in winter too. During the day I do use my phone for alerts for zoom times, appts etc.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Welcome to the trail, Jenny. My cat, Martha, knows that during Jeopardy! I don’t budge from my chair, so she pesters me for food fifteen minutes before the program starts. Within five minutes of 10 PM she agitates to get her bedtime snack, her internal clock is amazingly accurate.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. Welcome, Jenny. I’ve mentioned before that my English setter knew when it was 4 PM, the time we took our exercise walk. And by “knew,” I mean he would magically appear a minute or two from exactly 4. His invisible wrist watch was precise.

      Liked by 3 people

    3. Hey Jenny, and how is the diet going for the kitty? Our kitty managed to lose her excess weight after she had some surgery a couple of months ago. She’s all better now and we’ve changed from some high calorie kitty treats to a lower calorie/more trout/less filler treats and she seems to like those just fine.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. She is more playful and active since achieving her ideal weight. Still food oriented and sometimes sits near cupboard where treats are kept(she does get a treat ball that she rolls all over to get treats out). I say “no way not now” and I swear she shrugs her shoulders and sighs “well it was worth a try”

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Well at least she shrugs her shoulders and gives it up. Nimue will sit on the counter while I’m trying to work there until the cows come home. Whether I give her anything or not.


  7. I have an annoying feature on my work computer that dings 15 minutes before every Microsoft Teams meeting I have been “invited” to attend, whether or not I actually have to go to the meeting.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Like tim, I use my phone for an alarm. But my dad taught me if you just tell yourself when to wake up, I usually do. If I set the alarm often I wake up just a minute before it goes off.
    I had a hard time as a teenager hearing my alarms. Hit the ‘snooze’ in my sleep and pretty soon Dad was banging on my door and yelling at me because I was late to the barn.

    Kelly still has to be at work from home by 7:30 so she sets her alarm most every day. She had to actually go IN to work today; new residents start today.

    Strawberries; there is a berry place just a few miles from us. They decided not to have any U-pick this year. So their family is picking all the berries, then we order online and pick up the next day. It’s been tough on them, but they felt it was the best option.
    And their berries are SO GOOD! I swear they make my knees buckle when i eat them. Daughter asked me one day how many times I was going to say “MMMmmm, Mmm Mmm” when I eat them. I said every time.
    We just cut and eat fresh. But I’m thinking I’ll freeze some from the next batch.
    And for the record, I never pick my own. I had to pick a bunch as a kid and I hated it. I’m more than happy to pay them EVERY year to pick them for me so I’d been doing that anyway.
    I think it’s my straw they cover them with in the winter that makes them taste so good. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I’m absolutely sure that if it ever becomes a chore, it will be the last time I pick strawberries. In fact when YA was about six we picked blueberries – once. It was hot, it was dusty, and YA wasn’t even remotely interested. So it took a long long time, because blueberries are so very small, to get a worthwhile amount. And I have never picked blueberries since.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. My family was talking about picking the wild black raspberries that grow all over. They all remember picking and complaining about the bugs and being scratched and how it was always hot. I have a bunch between two sheds and it’s not so bad. They’re only 3-4′ deep so can reach most of them. Morning, when there’s still dew on them… oh, they’re good.
        I told the family I would let them know when they were ready. They said “Picked and ready to pick up?” I laughed. Yeah. If 1/2 cup is enough for you.
        Love them on ice cream.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. only time i ever picked them was up on the north shor when i happened upon them. i ate them as i went for about two hours it was glorious on a perfect day overlooking hte wave crash on the cliffls below

        Liked by 3 people

  9. My last alarm clock was the best I ever had. The Moon Beam clock was a retro 1950s design that was very attractive (if you’re into Fifties stuff). The actual alarm was an unpleasant buzz, but before making that sound the clock would silently flash a light toward the ceiling so you could turn the alarm off before it blatted out its noise.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. I have absolutely no trouble getting up in the summer, in fact just the opposite. Once the sun is up and the birds start to sing, I’m done. But in the winter months I have a lot of trouble getting up in the dark. For many years I had an alarm clock with snooze alarm on it and I could hit that snooze alarm and fall deep asleep before it went off seven minutes later. I even put the clock on the other side of the room and that didn’t help much either. What did help is an alarm clock that has a light on it. Starting a half an hour before the alarm goes off the light starts to come on gradually so there is light in the room. It also doesn’t have a snooze alarm function which means my brain knows I have to get up.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. my show the middle had a character named axl that would sit around the house in his underwear and his mom would say hey you promised me youd be ready at 8 and its one minute to. he would jump up pulling his pants on,pull a shirt over his head and jump into his shoes in a 5 second swish. it makes me smile because that was me at 16

    Liked by 3 people

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