Well my cold turned out to be hellacious.  My husband got it first and I just thought he was a big baby.  Until I found myself fully clothed in bed shivering with fever.  Shivering!  It was positively malarial.  Not a lot else got done for the rest of the week. 

We took a weekend trip to the Dscn0423_2Great Pumpkin Patch in Arthur, Illinois, and boy was it great. There were pumpkins, yawn, but the real draw was the squash.  According to their website, TGPP grows more than 400 varieties of pumpkin, squash and gourds and they have turned it into a cucurbit theme park.  There are all kinds of, uh, exhibits, like the Noah’s Ark (pumpkins & squash ascending two-by-two up the ramp into the cute wooden ark), the pumpkin tree, the wall ‘o squash, cucurbits from A to Z, the three little pigs (three cute piglets in a pen with a little houses of straw, wood and bricks) and various other oddities.  My husband is very excited about growing squash on our farm and has been reading up on this noble fruit (yes, it’s a fruit).Dscn0407 

I love squash – as in, butternut or acorn squash all cut up in a plastic box at Trader Joe’s which I bring home and roast, or make into soup.  I had no idea that those are terribly pedestrian, the Red Delicious of squash, ho-hum at best.  We now have a large pile of squash in our house, a few of which look like these warty pink beauties.  Meet the Galeux d’Eysines, which I am told means "Mangy Dog of Eysines," which is supposed to be absolutely yummy with brilliant flavor, meaty and sweet.  We also have scary warty black squash, weird pale green ones, and stripey ones like in the picture above.  My husband says "If you’ll cook ’em, I’ll cut ’em up," which is a deal with the Devil as far as I’m concerned.  We’re going to need a chain saw to cut these things open.   

But don’t you love it that the ugliest ones will probably taste the best?  That just makes so much sense.  While our friends were wandering around and my husband was filling a wagon with squash, I was enthralled by their colors and took 271 pictures, meaning I shot pictures until my batteries ran out.  They were just so many colors, piled up so alluringly in the rustic crates with the cute handpainted signs.  It turned into a major art project and I had a wonderful time.  Here are some of my finalists:

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Dscn0420 Pretty cool, huh?

You should go, if you can.

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