Sigmund and Beaumont: Autumn Orchards

Sigmund and Beaumont: Autumn Orchards

September had drawn to its close and the crisp coolness of autumn had officially arrived. Best friends Sigmund and Beaumont had been eager for weeks to visit the apple orchards with Miss Sally, Beaumont’s human companion. Beaumont was a small black cat who enjoyed wearing bowties, and Sigmund was his friend, a wee house spider. Well, Miss Sally finally said that their annual trip to the apple orchards of her kindly neighbor Mr. Thomas had arrived. Beaumont nearly leapt for joy in his excitement. 

Beaumont was dressed in his favorite red bowtie, his tail gently swaying eagerly as Miss Sally buttoned on her coat and pinned on her hat. She scooped him into her arms and out the door she went. Sigmund had caught a ride in Miss Sally’s hat, likewise excited to visit the orchards, though for Sigmund, he just enjoyed the wee winged snacks that buzzed around the bad and fallen fruit. With a merry spring in her step, Miss Sally made her way down the path toward Mr Thomas’s orchards, Beaumont in one arm and a large basket hung on the other. There Mr Thomas was, waving kindly as Miss Sally and her dear Beaumont approached. A sweetness filled the air, drifting from the nearby house, the scent of apples being cooked into pies and jellies and pressed into cider. Mr Thomas gave Beaumont a scratch under the chin – his favorite – before Miss Sally placed him down so he could go explore.

He could see the smile on her face as she began conversing with Mr Thomas. Beaumont smiled to himself, wondering what it was they were talking about that made Miss Sally so happy. He headed toward the orchard, leaves crunching under his paws and Sigmund peaking out to take it all in. 

“Here we are, my friend,” Beaumont chimed as he sprung up onto a bow of one of the trees. “We made it to Mr Thomas’s orchards. You’ll have all the fruit flies you can eat, and I’ll help Miss Sally get the best apples down for her apple butter. She always seems worried about finding the best apples for her apple butter, I’m determined to help.”

“Mmmm, the flyin’ snacks are a-buzzin’, so they are,” Sigmund replied, smacking his mandibles as he gazed at an apple above them that was starting to rot. “I’ll have me snacks, then get ya the best apples for Miss Sally.”

Beaumont laughed as Sigmund scurried up the tree to the apple above them. Soon, the wee spider had eaten his fill, and all that was left was to pick the best apples. Sigmund swung from a higher branch, pointing up to the top where he could see the best apples were. Beaumont stood up and put his front paws on the trunk of the tree, then rocked, shaking the tree. Down came a cascade of crunchy, orange-tinted leaves, piling below, then THUMP, THUMP, THUMP! Down came the apples from the bows of the tree. 

Miss Sally, followed by Mr Thomas arrived shortly after, continuing their happy conversation. 

“Look out, Miss Sally! Apples coming down,” Beaumont meowed loudly. THUMP! Another apple tumbled down, falling right in front of her and narrowly missing her. She caught it.

Miss Sally stepped back, looking up to the wee cat in the tree. She scolded him for nearly hitting them, but then laughed when she saw the collection of juicy red apples on the ground. Mr Thomas laughed too, gathering them up and placing them into bushel baskets for her. Beaumont shrunk back at first, but when they laughed, he meowed happily and hopped down to help gather the apples.

“A fine batch of apple butter they’ll make this year, for certain,” Beaumont said as he dropped an apple into the bushel.  

“And a fine collection of them flyin’ snacks I’ll have from the cores. Perfect to spin a web near,” Sigmund said.

It was a wonderful outing that day, and indeed, Miss Sally made her best batch of apple butter she ever had, thanks to Beaumont’s help.