Posted tagged ‘picnics’

“Facts must be faced. Vegetables simply don’t taste as good as most other things do.”

February 28, 2016

We have lots of sun this morning and a light blue sky, but the day is breezy and cool. I can hear the sweet sounds of the wind chimes blowing.

I’m in a Sunday frame of mind, the kind of Sunday we had when I was a kid, a quiet day, a hang around the house day waiting for dinner. Sunday was always special. It was the only day we had dinner, a fancier fare than we had all week. Dinner was always in the afternoon, usually around two. Supper was at night. My dad used to work late and wasn’t always home in time for supper. We were always together for Sunday dinner. The meal centered around a roast of some sort and mashed potatoes. The vegetables differed from week to week. Bread was never served though I remember it was always on the table at the Cleaver’s, the Walton’s and most other programs about families. Their bread wasn’t fancy, just sliced bread stacked on a plate. I never saw any of them use salt or pepper on their foods. We didn’t either. The table held our plates and silverware and the food. There was barely room for the six of us. Most times my mother would move the food to the counter after we had served ourselves. If we wanted more, she’d always get up to serve us. I don’t remember my mother ever sitting down for an entire meal. We seldom had dessert, not even at Sunday dinner. If there was any in the house, we’d have a bowl of ice cream or we’d grab a few cookies, Oreos were the favorite.

I didn’t know until I was older that potatoes could be more than mashed or French fried. I was surprised to find out carrots and potatoes weren’t the only vegetables which could be served fresh, not out of a can. I did know about corn on the cob, but that was a summer vegetable for a cook-out.

I don’t remember having Sunday dinners in the summer. We had picnics at the beach and cookouts in the backyard. We ate a lot of hamburgers and hot dogs. Corn on the cob and baked beans, out of a can of course, were usually the vegetables. In those days we never had salad. Potato salad came much later, when we were older. Green salad was never a hit.

Despite the canned veggies and the lack of salads and greenery, we were healthy kids. We suffered from the usually maladies of childhood in those days like measles or the mumps, but that was about it. I might have wished to have a few stay at home from school sick days, but I wasn’t ever that lucky.

 

‘I don’t know why, but the meals we have on picnics always taste so much nicer than the ones we have indoors,’ said George.”

May 14, 2013

Although it is only a bit after 10, I have already had a busy morning in contrast to yesterday’s day of sloth. I woke up at 6:30 to the sound of raindrops, came downstairs, went to get the papers then read both of them. When I was finished, I went upstairs and  changed my bed. As I unfurled the bottom sheet, a sock flew out of the corner, the missing sock to one of the few pairs I have without holes. I never throw socks away. I always figure the shoe hides the holes. I then finished the bed, got dressed and left for my 9 o’clock library board meeting. Our biggest agenda item was choosing between plastic or wood for planting tubs and between Alberta Spruce and some other bush with a Japanese sounding name. We went wooden and the bush with a Japanese sounding name. I tried to Google the name of the bush and put into Google Odd Bush with Japanese sounding name, but George W. kept appearing. That gave me a bit of a chuckle. My next stops were the post office and the pharmacy. My last stop was voting in the town election. The big race is for selectman, three running for two spots. There were also two requests for tax overrides and a non-binding question as to whether the nuclear plant in Plymouth should be closed. People are a bit edgy that the evacuation route means driving by the plant. While I was driving all over town doing errands, the sun came out and the sky turned a light blue. It is, however, still a bit cold, only in the low 50’s. My heat came on this morning.

When I was a kid, we never went on a picnic just for the sake of a picnic. We’d eat outside sitting on the back steps which is, I suppose, a cousin to the picnic; however, I do remember stopping at rest areas and eating at picnic benches but only on long rides, usually to somewhere for vacation. We ate at the beach, but it was the water and the sand which drew us, not a picnic. My mother had a picnic basket and a red Tartan jug. She made great sandwiches, and there were usually chips and Oreos.

When I was in Ghana, we went on picnics just for the fun of a picnic. We’d bring the small charcoal burner, some hot dogs from a can or from the meat factory that used to be in Bolga, bread, chopped tomatoes and onions and probably something for dessert though I don’t remember what. I’m leaning toward the sweet donuts or the toasted coconut balls. We’d load up then ride our motorcycles a bit into the bush. Once I remember being near Tonga and another time paying guys to haul our bikes across a small pond. We’d sit on a blanket, enjoy our lunch and watch Ghana. I loved those picnics.

Here on the cape we used to have picnics on a hill overlooking the Grist Mill. We’d climb and complain about it as we carried the basket of goodies and the drinks. I remember being so glad to reach the top and hurrying to spread out the blanket so I could collapse. We’d stay for hours.

We’d bring picnics to Sunday night band concerts every week. We all took turns bringing the appetizer, the dinner or the dessert and then we’d share. Another time we had a picnic before a town meeting. Lots of people did. We all sat about the baseball field or the bleachers enjoying dinner from a basket. The meeting was with both towns about the school budget and was on the high school football field. The chairs were under a tent and I thought it had a bit of the circus about it. A group of musicians played before the meeting and the snack bar was open. That was a long time ago.

I think it’s time to bring back picnics and Tartan jugs.


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