Differences between the Northerners and the Southerners…

I have a good friend in Maine who decided this year she was going to make her own maple syrup. She was really excited about it, sent me a very knowledgeable article about how to go about it and I was really impressed with her ambition to tackle this project. We make our own cane syrup and that’s a job in itself, so I had a pretty good idea of what she was going to take on all by herself. Here’s a picture of one of the trees on her first day of tapping the syrup…

Cat's Maple Tree Tapping

 

Interesting, huh?  Looks cold and looks like a lot of work, but wow, how cool, I thought to myself.  I saved this picture to my screensaver.  Today she sends me this picture.  Now keep in mind, our weather here today in Florida is just beautiful, the sun is finally out and the wind is blowing a gale, and I can’t wait to get out in it…)

The Cars in the Yard Today

 

I looked at this picture and thought, “Wow, what an April Fools Day they are having!”  Then I noticed that odd shape sticking out of the front of the truck.  Emailed her about that…she said “They stand the wipers up so they won’t freeze to the windshields…better than trying to dig them out to warm up the car…”

Well, duh, now that I see that, it makes perfect sense.  Glad we don’t have to do that here in good old sunny Florida…

I proceed to ask her how her maple syrup making is going and  she tells me this and I quote…

“Well, let’s see, my maple syrup experience…where do I begin…We put out 15 taps in maple trees out to camp and in a week I had 35 gallons of sap.  My next part was boiling it down…where we have too much snow this year I couldn’t get to the fireplace.  So with my real smart intelligence that I have I set up two gas cookers in the shed out to camp (the ones used for deep frying a turkey).  I had one going real low to keep the sap hot and the other one boiling like hell, getting the water out of the sap…then I’d add the hot over to the boiling.  Do you know how long it takes to boil down 35 gallons of sap??? I DO!!!  I started at 1:30 p.m. and was still at it at 3:30 a.m., 13 frigging hours…and it was now down to only one gallon left…so I took it in camp and finished it off.  Took about another two hours to get it to 219 degrees…had my jars all ready to put it in.  By then I was so freaking tired…out of 35 gallons of sap I ended up with the grand sum of  5 DAM PINTS of syrup!! I call it liquid gold!!  Everyone has asked me for some…I tell them, “Are you for real!”

15 taps with hoses…$30.00

Trip to camp everyday…gas for car…$30.00

Propane gas to run 2 cookers 13 hours…$35.00

Candy thermometer – $5.00

Cheese cloth for straining…$4.00

Learning experience….PRICELESS!!!

I learned I’ll never do it again!!  So basically that is my maple syrup experience in a nutshell!!”

I had a really good laugh over this and just had to write it down.  Gee…I wonder…should I ask her if she’ll send me a pint of that liquid gold?  By Fedex?  I’d better not…I don’t really like maple syrup THAT much, I’m hooked on the cane syrup.

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