Summertime: the weather is hot and the eatin’ is good.
Here in my part of town, if you’re going to splurge calorie-wise, or money wise to have a sweet frozen treat, the best place to go is Calder’s Dairy or Bob-Jo’s Frozen Custard Stand. They are the local favorites and each place has been around for decades. Thinking back … the only frozen sweet treat better than these two places, was sharing a grape popsicle with my best friend Linda Crosby while we sat in the two-ring wading pool back around 1960. Yup, those were the best of times … you’d get one whole popsicle and have to break it evenly down the middle. We’d be dripping popsicle juice into the wading pool and walking around with wide grape smiles until Mom washed off all the evidence.
Even more Summer delights are on the grill – burgers, hot dogs and ribs. It’s a wonder we can fit into our clothes by Summer’s end, and that’s why we have to have plenty of fruits and veggies to balance our iced confection habits.
Today’s destination was a trip to beautiful Elizabeth Park followed by a short visit at the Lincoln Park Farmer’s Market
I left early to beat the heat because it was wicked hot once again (75 degrees and 89% humidity). One more day of this sultry weather and we will have a short cool spell (thankfully).
I prefer trekking in Trenton’s Elizabeth Park on Sundays as there are less people, so the critters are usually more abundant. On Saturdays there are kids with soccer practice and lots of parents watching them, so the parking spaces fill up fairly quickly.
As I said in one of my last trips to this venue, I vowed the next time I was here, that I would tote along some crusty bread to spread on the picnic table that is nestled in a woodsy area. You may recall I watched a boule being broken up and placed onto the wooden table slats and the squirrels and birds just went crazy for it. I had some errands yesterday, so was out and about and stopped at Meijer to buy a couple of fresh baguettes.
I thought it was only fitting to get French bread since yesterday was Bastille Day, and, even though our eyes may be focused on world sports events like Wimbledon tennis and World cup soccer, with France’s victory, I think everyone has forgotten all about the Tour de France!
I parked the car and set out, first walking along the River on the Boardwalk, always a treat, especially on a hot and sticky day like today.
I didn’t discriminate and just bring bread; nope, I brought some oyster crackers for any ducks along the shoreline and peanuts for the squirrels.
But, either the ducks were lying low this morning, or the heat had them hunkered down somewhere cooler, as they were nowhere near the water.
I headed up the incline to the footbridge and saw a cute squirrel in the trees. He was eyeing me very suspiciously as if I might reach in there and grab him.
What I did reach for was my Ziploc bag of peanuts, hoping to entice him out of the tree and onto the bridge area.
He studied my every move.
Then finally, his eyes traveled along the bridge where he saw me place some peanuts. I guess he figured I was trustworthy, because off he scampered along the top of the footbridge to get some treats.
I did one trip around the entire perimeter of Elizabeth Park, and it was shady in most places. That sure was welcome. I saw some squirrels and there were geese as well, so there were opportunities to tender some crackers and more peanuts.
I had broken up the baguettes at home. The smell was just delightful as I was tearing them into bite-size chunks, so, I just had to sample a chunk of bread slathered with peanut butter to ensure it tasted okay for the critters. It tasted fine (more than fine), so I hung the bag of bread, along with some oyster crackers and peanuts, onto my fanny pack for easy access. I am sure I was listing to one side as I walked, but hey – I aim to please (plus I wanted to get a few pictures of the food fest). I located the spot where some kind souls have set up a feeding station for the birds adjacent to a wooden picnic table. Here the feathered and furry friends come to gather and munch down.
I emptied the contents of the bread bag on one side of the long table, plus put some on the ground. The oyster crackers and peanuts were scattered at the opposite end of the picnic table. It was time for me to hang out under the shady tree to watch what happened next.
I had a ten-minute wait before the first munchkin came a’callin’.
Then the squirrels went to investigate the opposite end of the table.
I got my pictures taken, then had to move on to get some more steps in before heading out of the Park and to my next destination, the Lincoln Park Farmer’s Market.
Our local Farmer’s Market is a weekly pop-up affair that is located on a busy corner here in Lincoln Park. The vendors gather each Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., from May through October. Here they set up tables to sell flowers by the flat or basket, fruits and veggies fresh from their trees and/or fields and a variety of wares like candles, candy, honey, kettle corn and trail mix. Something new this year was a catering service with steam tables offering hot food. I usually try to stop at least once a year to visit.
These were some of the offerings:
I perused and took photos, but didn’t buy anything and it was mighty hot by then and I had parked far away, so I hustled to the car, switched on the A/C and just relaxed a few minutes.
Suddenly it is Sunday evening as I’m writing this post after coordinating my photos – where the heck did the weekend go?