I didn't grow up in the country: gardening, hunting, hiking or anything otherwise outdoorsy. While my parents were avid city-gardeners, I most certainly was NOT. I would actually trade cleaning all four bathrooms to get out of gardening duty. I willingly succumbed to that torture, rather than go work in the dirt. Weeding. Hoeing. Sweating. Being bitten by various bugs. Even with 5 brothers to clean up after - scrubbing the bathrooms offered me a much less painful choice.
I really didn't ever think I'd need any useful outdoor knowledge, other than scheduling the lawn care. But somewhere in the last 17 years my likes changed. And I had boys. That's probably a big part of the equation from would-rather-clean-a-bathroom to lover-of-all things-outdoor. Except mosquitoes. And fire ants. And wasps...you get my drift.
One thing I've noticed about our local friends and neighbors is their inherent knowledge of seasons. They know when to plant potatoes, without reading it in Martha Stewart Living. They are fully aware of what hunting season is coming, prepare for it with great anticipation, and never once refer to any kind of manual.
Our Fairy Godmother's husband called on Sunday to see if we wanted to hunt what he calls wild mushrooms. When I asked how he knew when to hunt for mushrooms, he told me they're always up when the May Apple is up. Of course that led to another question, and a picture.
He found a baby mushroom as we were tromping through the woods and then spotted this one from about 10 feet away. I thought immediately of one of those lucky people who always find 4-leaf clovers. I am not one, but I bet he is...
The boys were so excited, they almost got into a brawl over who was going to pick the golden mushroom. When I noted aloud it was was a morel, he said, "Hmm, that's what you call it."
So even transplants have a bit of knowledge to share. I certainly know where the best butcher is and how to experiment with different types of organic gardening. And I do know how to hunt. I can hunt for eggs in the barn, and I know I have to wash them before I use them.
Perhaps I'm on my way to becoming a local after all.