Just my luck that they should appear right now. In 24 hours, I will be in California, far away from the perfect sour cherries which call to me from the Jean Talon market. My timing is disastrous.
Our lovely tomatoes are ripening on the vine, including white heirloom ones which I've never tasted, and probably never will. I gave my sister instructions to pick them and eat them, then to write me and tell me what they were like.
The fennel is in flower, as is the coriander. Who will harvest the seeds? And let's not mention the pollen. It's too painful.
My mother's garden is overrun with the plumpest raspberries you've ever seen. I don't have time to do anything about it.
Blackberries, gooseberries, black raspberries, oh, God, the currants. Not them, too.
And I only had enough time to buy a half-flat of sour cherries which I used to make pickled sour cherries and a sour cherry almond preserve. What about my brandied cherries? And cherry syrup? Next year.
This frenzy reminds me of a hilarious passage I recently read in Beverley Nicols' charming book Merry Hall. One summer, he is called away from his house and garden on business. During those few weeks, he calls his manservant, Gaskin, every day to ask how the garden is doing, what is in bloom and does he think it will still be there when he returns. ("Don't you think you should put a bouquet of lilies in the cold room, in case?" He does.)
I hope you all take full advantage of the short sour cherry season in my absence.
What am I talking about? I'm going off on vacation...