Pure joy for a mother of three is having a whole bowl of fresh strawberries to herself: Not the unwanted, mushy leftovers she usually gets, but the juicy, sweet ones served just for her with a dollop of whipped cream and with fresh flowers on the table.
Words can't describe the taste of late spring, and the lines at the farm stands attest to our green-starved appetite. In our breakfasts this month, we'll incorporate asparagus, Swiss chard, rhubarb, and strawberries in savory custards or stuffed herb crepes, and the strawberries on their own or baked into a sweet little cake or tart. But even though we pay extra special attention to our breakfasts, we never know what detail or event will make a traveler's visit memorable. Often it has nothing to do with us or the food.
One morning, our neighbor Mary had the opportunity to meet a guest from Maryland and they were surprised to discover they had a connection through milk. As it turns out, the company Mary contracts to buy her organic milk is the same company the guest buys at her local market. Both recalled the story to me later, smiling. Saying, but not saying, how small the world is. How satisfying it was to put a face with a product, a family with a bottle of milk.
We hear stories about waking to the sound of a horse-drawn plow plodding along outside the bedroom window; curious heifers running to the fence, pushing each other and vying for the front spot for a photo op; exhausted parents on a weekday getaway eating breakfast in their pajamas; sitting down at breakfast to find the other guests are your best friends from your post-college years; planning a whole day of wine tours only to plop down on the porch and go nowhere for hours; seeing a barn swallow nestling leave the nest; catching the purple light just before sunset.
All the planning in the world couldn't make these things happen. As innkeepers, we savor these experiences and aspects of our life. Our house is a comfortable respite for those who are willing to treat themselves to it, and serendipity takes care of the rest. You just never know.