We know, we know. You thought the calendar would turn to August before gardeners would begin shoving — er, gifting — zucchinis into your reluctant hands.
Walking down the streets of White River Junction Tuesday afternoon, I saw the evidence: a basketful of slender green and yellow squashes poking out of a basket in front of the Revolution clothing store. By their side stood a most welcoming sign, alerting customers to a temporary closure needed to replace a leaky air conditioner above the front door.
"Please check back in an hour," the sign read, all friendly like. And then came the dreaded line:
"And, help yourself to a zucchini!"
Okay, I asked Molly Elsasser, the jolly Revolution staffer inside. What gives?
She explained that a server at the nearby Tuckerbox restaurant had an overabundance in her garden. "She came in last week, she had a basket with her, Vermont-style. She said, 'My garden is going nuts.' "
Good neighbors that they are, the folks at Revolution agreed to offer the veggies to the world. "Nice way to spread the love," Molly said. "The Vermont garden love."
I should have known better, but her demeanor was so cheerful. And the zucchinis — along with some cucumbers — looked so inviting. I know that in a month, the mere thought of zucchini will trigger a flight-or-fight chemical in my body, that I will be double-checking my car door locks to make sure I'm not a target for another garden vigilante.
But on Tuesday, I was an innocent. I reached for the basket.
"Please," said Molly. "Take them."