The staff at Campbell's Orchards made sure we knew how to pick apples properly. (Turn the apple upside down, and it'll come off without knocking other apples off of the tree.) Then we wandered into the designated rows of lush orchard, the air filled with the ambient perfume of ripe apples, the branches heavy with fruit. It didn't take much time to pick a ten-pound bag of MacIntosh apples ($5), and so we went back to pick more things.
The raspberries ($2/pint) were the most tempting, and odds are good we'll both have eaten our share by the end of tomorrow. Picking raspberries where many other have picked before is slow, steady work. The sky was blue and the sun steady, so I was particularly glad I remembered my hat. The ripe berries were hiding inconspicuously underneath leaves, or deep within the bush where few had bothered to search. A few at a time, the berries piled up in the punnets until, at least half an hour or more later, they were full. Of course we ate some along the way too.
Picking tomatoes required negotiation, as the smallest available unit was a bushel, which involved far more tomatoes than I could possibly use. The man at the cash register gave me the container and said he'd charge me by weight when I returned with as many as I wanted. The tomatoes were untamed, untrellised, wild on the ground, which meant there was wastage everywhere. Still, it didn't take too long to fill half the bushel with the weight and the lovely smell of freshly-picked tomatoes. I still have more tomatoes than I will ever use, but it only cost $3. And I hope I will use them all, for tomato sauce freezes well.
The other vegetative entertainment available included a corn maze we were too tired to do. There was also a shop selling pre-picked vegetables, cider, fudge, pies, and other locally-produced confections.
The trip back would have been perfect if it hadn't taken us three and a half hours of driving in stop-and-start freeway driving to return home again afterwards.