It happens to me somehow every summer. There will be an event or I’ll see a person that triggers some kind of de ja vu mind trip. Jerry and I were having green onions and tomatoes today and it happened again. I thought I would share our little journey with the hope that it will take somebody else on a pleasant flashback.
Jerry was out buying tires this morning (Yes, I know it’s surprising but the tread was just about gone on the Jeep tires.). Anyway, he stopped at one of our favorite vegetable stands and wondered home with gorgeous, plump tomatoes, crunchy green onions and a nice Indiana cantaloupe. He was so proud of his finds that we dug into them immediately.
His first action was to grab a shot glass and fill it with salt to dip his onions in. That’s what triggered the first memory. He started relating to me how he didn’t really know what a shot glass was for as a child because the only way he saw it used was when his mother filled it with salt for the green onions. The story goes on: “As I got a little older, I watched Westerns on TV and saw the cowboys in the saloons use the same size and shape of glass to have a shot of whiskey. That’s when I began getting in our kitchen cabinet to fill the “salt glass” with my coke. Then I would lift it and swig it down the way they did in the movies.”
Of course, this conversation led to us trading memories of growing up in Indiana. These are a few that came to mind.
- My mother ate “hunky peppers” on butter bread. They are still too hot for me, but my brother loved them, too.
- My dad grew tomatoes in our yard every year. He was so excited when the “Big Boy” plants came out and he could try them.
- I remember the mint plants by the back door, smelling so good all the time. My mom would put it in the iced tea.
- Going to Crown Hill Cemetery after it rained to catch night crawlers with my dad. We would take an empty coffee can and fill it to the brim. If we caught two at a time, that was a real victory. Then we could fish for hours in Fall Creek.
- Catching lightning bugs in a jar with holes poked in the lid.
- My dad bringing home a watermelon and putting it into the big aluminum tub of ice water to chill. It was so sweet.
- Taking an evening ride in the car, going over the hill at Garfield Park. We called it “tickle-belly hill” because of how you felt when Dad drove quickly over it.
- Walking to the Dairy Queen to buy a Dilly Bar or a chocolate-dipped cone for 10 cents!
- All the neighborhood children playing hide-and-seek after dark.
- The huge honeysuckle bush on the telephone pole at the corner of our house. We would pick the blooms and suck the sugary nectar.
- Eating homegrown tomatoes until I had sores inside my mouth.
These memories always bring smiles. We'd love to hear your flashbacks. Just click on the comments link at the bottom of this post and tell us your favorite memories -- Just for fun.