Thursday, October 16, 2014

Pie and a Borrowed Blue Bike

I took a well needed break from the office today and headed across the state lines to Wisconsin, to "bimble" around the little towns that run along Lake Pepin. It was just the girls as we left my husband on his day off, happily with chain saw in hand, ready to attack the dead river birch in our front yard, and over grown, and dying shrubbery around the front porch. We'll tackle new landscaping in the spring. DD# 2, in typical 13 year old fashion wanted to know exactly what we were going to be doing, and what is actually in these little towns. DD#1 was happy to have a little break from the set today, and went with no expectations.

 We had a brief disappointment in that the little bakery, known for artisan bread and mammoth sized cookies was closed, in our first destination stop.  There wasn't much other to see there so we kept on. After parking,  we wandered the tiny little streets and I pointed out what was in each little shop.  The weather was absolutely perfect for aimless wandering,  sunny and 60ish, but slowly creeping temperatures reached 70 today. We passed a little bike rack, with loaner blue bikes for the borrowing. These are the great no gear bikes of yesteryear.  The type of bike I wanted, but my husband thought a 10 speed would be better. I still beg to differ, since the gears are too complex for me.  When I ride I just want to peddle and be casual about it.  Some of these blue bikes had cute little baskets. There is a sign on each bike that reminds you to just park it in any of the bike racks around town. We saw one other rack. These bikes amused DD#2, and she found her bike of choice, and took a little spin.

 We then found the Stockhom Pie Company.  I knew what heaven awaited us once inside.  There were a few customers before us, but they were trying to decide between slices or a whole pie, and what was available. The Pie Company makes all their pies from scratch in a tiny little kitchen.  When the pie run's out, it is out.  They have a limited number of whole pies, and one of the bakers said on weekends and busy days, they are completely out by mid afternoon. We each picked a different kind. DD#2 picked traditional apple with a dollop of whipped cream. DD#1 went for triple berry, but me, never one to turn down peanut butter or chocolate, went for peanut butter fudge. We even were kind and bought the last 6 inch mini triple berry pie for the hubby.  The girls thought they would get another sliver of that one later. Now it was nearing 11:00, and the little place was getting crowded. The wipe board showing what pie's and slices were left was being updated and erased as either the last pie sold, or a new one was ready to come to the case. We squeezed around a little table, and dug in, sampling each others.  All were insanely delicious, but the pieces were quite large, and we didn't finish all three.  This was definitely a splurge, at close to $30 for the pie and beverages for each of us.  I know I was going to gladly eat from the pantry after splurging on take out Chinese on Tuesday, but this day was planned, and it was pie!

An inside look at the Stockholm pie company.  Not a big place.
To work off the pie, we kept our walk around the little village, poking in the little shops.  The allure of the blue bike caught my daughter again, and she went back and found the same one.  While she was tooling around on a back gravel road, the other D and I just sat and chatted a bit.  She hasn't really found a place yet out west, and is getting a little stressed by it.  She is excited to think about a return trip to the UK to see the showing of her cohorts final projects.  She doesn't know how she is going to get her stuff purged and packed.  There is a lot to think about when you are 23 and want to be fully launched but aren't quite there. When DD#2  had enough,  she returned her bike and we got ready to check out more on our route.  We did some old book shopping, and some wine tasting at a little winery and apple orchard and found delicious cheese at a cheese factory to take home.  We grabbed a very late, real lunch there as well-the pie had finally  been burned off, and shared a bottle of sparkling lemonade.

Days like this are a gift not to be wasted.  I knew when we got back I would need to log into the office to finish still that blasted report, but I amazed myself that I didn't read e-mails once after we left the house in the morning, and until back home. Our front of house was almost unrecognizable without the tree and the Shrubs.  DH had worked up an appetite and was really excited that we brought him the pie.  I went to get a glass of water and he had just finished it stating, "great pie."  I asked where the rest was, and he said he ate the whole thing.  I guess he deserved it, but dang, a little sliver would taste mighty good about now.

This was a nice cozy area to sit and talk.  The hay bales looked inviting but we sat at the tables.

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