It’s Vermont’s most popular, most iconic and most famous weekend: Columbus Day weekend.
(Technically, since 2019, the entire state of Vermont now celebrates “Indigenous People’s Day”. But we draw crowds of leaf-peepers from all around the world, and only fourteen states have made the switch from Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day.)
It’s the height of our foliage season, and while 2020 might be abnormal and lackluster in many other ways, the fall colors have not disappointed. They are brilliant, virtual show-stoppers, with Kodak-moment worthy shots at every vantage point and turn.
Add in gorgeous weather, with summer-like warmth this afternoon and into the evening, and southern Vermont feels like another world right now.
About three weeks ago, our friends suggested we have one last hurrah with our campers, before winterizing and parking them until next year. Again, no one wanted to venture far from home—indeed, if we do, we are subject to Vermont’s guidelines for quarantining ourselves for another two weeks. After not a lot of thought, we agreed to set up camp above our pond, high on a hill with a lovely view. The bonus? For two of the three couples, we’re only a half a mile up the road from our homes.
We’ve spent the day in idyllic fashion. Watching the sun rise. Drinking morning coffee and tea overlooking the valley. Letting dogs frolic in the open field. Hiking the logging trail. Talking leisurely around the campfire.
For the evening meal, we have organized a bit of a feast. Half of the smoked brisket my husband has been carefully tending (since 5:30 this morning) comes from the neighboring dairy farm. Others have added cheeses, baked potatoes, homemade bread, squash, salad and apple crisp. A few neighbors join us (plus my sister and niece); soon we are a group of twenty-two up on the hill.
Again, the silver lining appears. Our first thought had been to travel somewhere else, just three couples together. Instead, here we are, gathering close to home—and celebrating well.