A few days back I was going through old pictures and realized how adventurous my teen years and early twenties had been. That realization helped me put a finger on a nagging feeling: lately the weeks and months have felt like a blur. It has been hard to distinguish between Tuesdays and Thursdays because they are all the same.
Routine is good to have comfort and a center in life, but it can sometimes make life mundane. When I look back at the past few months, our trip to Spa in Belgium stands out, but the rest is hard to remember. Why? Because it was all routine. The morning rush hour and the commute, grocery runs, meeting the same friends, cooking familiar meals, and going to our designated restaurants.
If all days are routine, how will special memories form?
When I shared my thoughts with Noor, he agreed that we need to break loose from our routine, so we can live a more memorable life. We used to travel significantly, but our current jobs come in the way of that, so we have decided to schedule at least one exciting activity every two weeks. It can be going to a museum, concert, public lecture, stand-up show, or anything else.
Today we went apple picking to De Olmenhorst. It’s a quiet oasis of beautiful, organic apple and pear orchards in the middle of the bustling Randstad. You are allowed to pick your own apples and pears and pay around 2-3 euros per kilo.
We decided to only pick apples, so we could come home and make apple cake, something we had never done together before today.
For a few hours that we were in the orchards, there were no calls, text messages, or social media notifications. It was just us filling our little bags with apples we thought were most juicy and crisp, talking to each other, and watching families around us. Dutch kids are so well-behaved. We were in awe of Dutch parenting.
When we were done picking the apples, we paid for them–amidst a dozen kids fighting about who has the most apples in their basket.
Now it was time to explore the many cafes and quaint stores at the estate.
We enjoyed lunch at one of the cafes. I ordered a mozarella, tomato and lettuce sandwich, whereas Noor went for a mackerel and apple one. They were both delicious; we couldn’t stop appreciating the fresh bread, fish, and cheese. Super lekker!
There was also a vast stretch of green that was occupied by farm cattle. I cannot tell you how adorable the sheep were. I wanted to cross the fence and cuddle with them–cannot say the same about the roosters. They looked angry!
As we were walking back to the car, I begged Noor to take a picture with me in these apple frames, but he blatantly refused. I watched children as they took turns to get their photos taken, silently wishing Noor wouldn’t be such a bore (he would nag me for life if he read this, haha).
That was the end of a peaceful and fun day at the orchards. We returned home with fresh, organic apples to make some French apple cake. I will share details of that in a separate post.
I hope this post gave you some food for thought about your own routine. If you too are caught in everyday mundanity, I hope the details of our little apple-picking adventure will inspire you to make unusual plans and create lasting memories.
Until my next post, be well, lovelies. xx