Alabama. Seagulls land in the parking lots, storms come up quick and violent, and the countryside is steep Iowa-type wooded hills. I used to hit every shoe sale until I ran out of closet space. Now I can't pass a fresh fruit and vegetable stand.
We cook fresh string beans with new baby red potatoes, onion and bacon. Delicious. Non-slimy okra cooked in a little v-8 juice, with fresh chopped tomatoes, summer squsash, zucchini, shallots, onions, and chopped fresh basil is wonderful with a slice of toasted garlic bread. I'm going to try it cold with a chopped cucumber and some sour cream - gazpacho of sorts. Breakfast is a ripe peach sliced with blueberries, strawberries, a mini-banana and plain yogurt: clock food. It keeps my sytem on time.
I've learned Crawfish are edible if they're curled. If they're straight it means they were dead when cooked, and they're poisonous. My first experience with crawfish wasn't good. They tasted muddy. Since I learned how to shuck them and remove the vein, I like them.
My gracious friend Dot's motto is: if it's NOT broke, I can fix it! And she'll paint it and move it. Shop tools are her passion, and she can sense a yard sale for miles. She seems to have a hotline to the Universal storehouse. Her needs aren't always voiced aloud, but whatever it is, it shows up: ie, a tall lamp for the living room. A couple of days later she came home with one somebody threw out, and the bulb still works.
To beautify her yard, Dot wanted a saga palm. Without her saying so, a friend brought her one that was "left behind." Pathetic. The shape of a pineapple and dead. She planted it by her back deck, talked to it, and watered it daily. Weeks went by before a sign of life appeared. "It's a miracle," she exclaimed. Send birth announcements. When it displayed a dozen leaves each a foot long, her riding mower got away from her crashing into it with blades a whirling. She exploded in tears apologizing to saga.
Her son came running. "What's wrong?"
"I killed my saga." Big tears.
"It'll be okay," and under his breath, it's just a plant.
"It's my baby." More Dot tears.
Daniel tilted the mower and dislodged the pulled-from-the-ground saga. Sad story. It's no longer round. The east side is flat. They planted it back in the ground, added water, and the last time we looked, six leaves survived, three more are scarred - paint won't help, and three are missing.
We celebrated the 4th early picniking on the deck with seafood gumbo, dirty rice, seafood salad, (We can't get enough fresh seafood when we're near the sea.) watermelon, brownies, and loving concern for the saga palm. On the 4th we're going to a Mississippi goat roast. That's another story. May your 4th be equally as pleasant.
copyright 2006 Red Convertible Travel Series