A timely-posted entry (relative to our Stonington entry) to thank all of our new Twitter followers and blog-readers for joining us! Elle and I made our way to the oh-so-conveniently located Middlefield today, and boy, it’s a lot shorter to take trips places that aren’t 2 hours away (ahem, Salisbury. And, ahem, Stonington.) Like, 2 hours shorter. Four hours round-trip. But I digress!
For those who don’t know, or don’t bother to read Wikipedia, Middlefield is so-named because it’s located halfway between Durham and Middletown. While wiki tells me it has a wonderful history dating back to the state’s first settlers, we focused on a more present issue: food. Our Middlefield trip was all about consumption. That and baseball. Because when you’re planning your trip around getting home in time for the start of the World Series (Elle is singing the national anthem), you tend to have a baseball state of mind.
Nothing says fall like a good orchard. Nothing says November like politics. And nothing says greatest-baseball-movie-ever like a field full of corn. At Lyman Orchards, we got all three.
Lyman does a great, non-threatening presidential corn maze in which we lost our way but never lost hope. And hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, when you’re traveling AROUND THE EARS OF 44TH PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA!
[Elle’s Apology for Emme’s Camera: Apparently Emme’s camera takes photos that refused to be rotated in both WordPress and Windows Photo Gallery. We apologize to our readers. Except to the ones who are reading this while sitting on the wall. To those readers we say, “You are badass.” Now, back to Emme.]
That’s right, we made it there in time for Obama Day! How exciting. We had the option of Halloween trivia, TV trivia, or Presidential trivia. Guess which one we chose.
But even with all of our presidential know-how, this was a challenge. Did you know James Madison was 5’4, 100 pounds!
Just like the Away We Go couple from our Salisbury trip, people carrying a newborn totally made it look easy. Maybe we OneSixNine girls need to kidnap a magic baby or something to guide us around the state. Or maybe not.
We’re big fans of shops. Particularly shops involving food. The Lyman grocery did NOT let us down. I got my hands on some great cider donuts that challenge the BF Clyde’s in deliciousness — these were more of an old-fashioned, heavier variety, the BF Clyde’s were lighter but hot. Newfangled, I guess you could say.
They had everything from the expected (hi-top apple pies) to the unexpected (homemade peanut butter), and it was definitely a good place to lose track of time. As we were walking out, a really friendly older guy tried to stop us to convince us to partake in his caricaturing services… by holding up pictures of lighthouses he’d painted. One of our traveling companions (did you know we have other friends? Well, Elle does. I don’t) considered it, but then decided that he’d just make us look like lighthouses. Hilarity ensued.
All that corn mazing (am I think only one who thinks ‘corn maze’ is a hilarious play on words, since corn = maize? yes? okay, i’ll let it go) really worked up our appetites, so off to lunch we went. Keeping with our theme, we opted for a ballpark-style treat — hot dogs!
But none of those wimpy Yankee hot dogs (Elle’s a Yankee fan, because she lacks a soul. Being a Bay Stater, I obviously am a Red Sox fan. I consider the statewide split to be a serious detriment to Connecticut’s success), we got a full 10 inches of delicious GUIDA’S hot dogs!
Talk to Someone
We got heckled by some of the guides at the corn maze, which is always a good time. There was a great series of trivia questions throughout the maze, one of which was “Can you name the 8 presidents with one-syllable last names?” Readers, this is a lot harder to do without google. We’ll let you think about this…. answer at the bottom of this post.
At Guida’s, though, I asked the staff there where to go for a drink in Middlefield. They were kind enough to not question why I needed to drink in Middlefield, but they directed me back towards Lyman for the adult beverage I was seeking. Based on where they sent us, I’m still trying to figure out if they were messing with us.
Sadly, we have no photos of the Rover Lodge Cafe, but I tell you, we really felt the dive vibe here. Maybe it was all the NASCAR pictures on the walls. Maybe it was all the NASCAR on the TV. Maybe it was the blue eyeliner or the hairspray on the clientele. Whatever the case, we got a number of odd looks as we ordered our drinks — Bud Light with Lime for Elle, Bud Light for me. Plus, I got carded. Not to bust my anonymity at all, but I’m 26. And I look at LEAST 22. And what 20 year old would be out trying to get served at 3pm on a Sunday afternoon at a dive bar with one presumably of-age friend? Apparently me. Anyways, the bartender was pleasant, the patrons ignored us, and we got to catch up on life in this hamlet.
Lessons in Connecticuting
- Corn mazes are muddy.
- Elle and Emme are in a never-ending secret race to beat each other to the next destination. If we based it on who got to the first location first, Emme would totally win.
- More places should sell hot apple cider.
- Field of Dreams is a great movie. This has nothing to do with Connecticut, but we thought you should know.
- William Howard Taft is a pretty big president.
….for those of you who were dying to know the answer to presidential trivia…
Bush 41, Bush 43, Polk, Pierce, Grant, Ford, Hayes, and… Taft!
(We were totally stuck on Taft and Bea, our lifeline, was too busy watching football to help us solve this one. As we were walking through the corn maze, Elle said, “I bet we’re missing one of the minor, do-nothing presidents.” I was certain we named every one of the less-than-a-chapter-in-my-history-book guys, and said, “No, I think he was was one of the BIG presidents,” which miraculously jogged Elle’s memory and totally made us crack up. True story. We’re lame.)