AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO GETS SENTIMENTAL OVER PUMPKIN PIE?
Aromas. Tastes. Memories.
Funny how something as simple as seeing, smelling, and eating pumpkin pie can take me down memory lane. It can also make me feel adventurous. You may ask how can a piece of pumpkin pie be adventurous? Well, if you had asked my parents, they could tell you. Heck, they’d travel from Dallas to Waxahatchie (with their favorite friends in the backseat of their spawling ’57 Pontiac), just to get a piece of Sweet Potato pie. They loved adventuring through Texas history, visiting courthouses and small town venues, and yes, even traveling a long distance just to taste a piece of southern culture. That may sound foolish to some; but to them, it was an adventure to learn and share some laughs. Which leads me into question, “What takes you down memory lane?”
Aromas. Tastes. Touch.
For me, just smelling a pumpkin pie baking is like walking into my Mammaw’s country kitchen. Instantly, my memory conjures the love that was shared unconditionally. Without hesitation, I see her sweet face gleaming over the gas stove, as all four burners glowed brightly under pots and pans of fried chicken, pinto beans, green beans or gumbo. That list could also include sweet corn, black eyed peas, fried okra, or mashed potatoes. And cakes and pies? Of course!
In the summer, Mammaw would make our favorite foods when we’d visit her. City to country, we’d experience three meals a day. No fast food, no pre-packaged frozen foods, no packaged foods, period. Yes…only foods straight from the field to the table. Fresh tomatoes, fresh okra, fresh everything! From the kitchen window, we could see the fields of watermelon, peanuts, cotton, corn…beautiful foods that sustained us for a very nutritious summer vacation.
Staying with my grandparents meant certain rituals. At night and after our prompt 6 o’clock meal, we’d enjoy our favorite cake or piece of pie, or a root beer float. My favorite was peanut sheet cake and cool lemon icebox pie, or chocolate custard pie. We enjoyed the kitchen delights out on the front porch as we watched the twinkling lights of the big city of Nixon, Tx rise from below the hill. Family talk would ensue, and we’d curiously listen to my grandparents discuss the ills of the world, and then I’d ask a million questions. Pappaw always had the right answers; and after solving all the world’s problems, we’d then turn off the front porch light and go inside to watch Gunsmoke or the Lawrence Welk show. As the moon shown through the Mesquite trees, and with country sounds floating through the rusted, screened windows, pitch darkness (without city lights) would show its scary self outside, and we’d lovingly get tucked into bed.
Memories. Aromas. Touch.
Mammaw would let me have the cool icebox lemon pie for breakfast, too, (of course, Mama never knew), which never altered my appetite for her bacon and eggs. My sister, cousin and I would rally round the breakfast table, ready for a day of country adventure and, what now, are memories of a wonderful childhood blended with culture, family, and experiences to share with my family and friends.
Traditions are unique to us all. Families are unique to us all. Life is unique for each of us, too. For these reasons, I love learning of others’ traditions and memories and how memories are triggered to take us back into what we selectively choose to remember.
Your memories may be similar, but, also, very different than mine. I like that, for it adds to my lifelong adventure of sharing cultures and traditions. Without our differences, what a boring world it would be. After all, if God had wanted us all to be alike…we would be. But He gives us free agency, different opportunities, and a variety of ways to expand ourselves, to learn, to tolerate, to grow.
TEXANA LANE’s adventures are experienced through the mind’s eye, through cultural opportunities, through actions of those around me, and through the teachings of my family, my traditions, my values, and God’s grace. The Universe enlightens my light and my spirit, and I am influenced by God and His power and His purpose.
I am fortunate to have had a good family, true friends, loving children, and the willingness to tolerate differences around me. In fact, I thrive on these opportunities; and well, pumpkin pie takes me back to where I began so that I may adventure into places yet to travel.
Touch. Aromas. Sounds. Sights. Memories.
Today, I inhale the essence of life around me. I see the beauty. I touch the work of God, and I allow my memories to catapult me back and forth from my past to my future.
Hoping you’re making good memories today and remembering yesterdays, too.
Adventure with spunk, sass, and soul. Live life lovingly.
Happy Fall, ya’ll!