Friday, February 22, 2008

I went back into town today to get Fat Buddy's prescriptions. And since I was feeling a little goat lonesome, I went to visit with Betsy and see all the wonderful babies. And Phoebe--who is growing like a weed. Betsy gave me a wonderful wide brimmed Amish straw hat--I'd been a bit covetous of hers--it's my favorite hat and now I have one of my very own. And since Lucky, the hat munching goat has been gone for a while--it is safe from being ripped off my head and carried around the pasture like a trophy.

I've been really into 70% cocao dark chocolate these days--the sort you just let warm up and melt slowly on your tongue. Honestly, milk chocolate is such a candy and you have to eat so much of it to get that good chocolate buzz. The dark is so much more satisfying. I tried an organic one today and was startled by its earthy tones. I think if I lived in Manhattan, I could get quite used to having access to real chocolate.

I've done a rewrite of The Scent of Peaches, correcting all my squirrelly tenses I used to write with.

The Scent of Peaches


I put up peaches in July—the early small ones, sweeter and more flavorful than the big Albertas that came in August. They were the best ones for eating, the Albertas, but the early peaches were best for pies. The summers of my life smelled of peaches, lazy sweetness lying wet on the tongue.

I remembered eavesdropping on my grandmother and her sisters. They crowded together in my grandmother's bedroom giggling like schoolgirls. My great aunt Emmy Jo drove from Florida with a box of mangos and oranges from her grove. Great aunt Baby Dear traveled from Tennessee stopping in Spartanburg for bushels of peaches. Aunt Nell lived across town, so four of the seven sisters, my personal Pleiades, would meet--their visits garnished with fruit.

They talked, sisterly, about mango peelings and rashes. One of the sisters broke out in a rash from mangoes. She said mangoes were related to poison ivy, so she peeled the peaches and left the mangoes to the other three. I thought this was odd since peach fuzz made me itch.

They washed their hands in the bathroom, always chattering. I was very small and sitting on my grandmother's rice bed with the nobbly white bedspread that left dimples on my skin. My chubby legs were still so short; I needed a step stool to climb on the bed. I wondered if she had any rock candy in her dresser--she always did. I thought about the peaches and wondered if my grandfather would whittle monkeys from the peach pits for me. I looked at my smooth little girl hands, chubby and ripe—too small to pare and cut.

My hands were no longer small and ripe, but when I inhaled the scent of peaches, for a moment, I was five.

3 Comments:

  1. Jbeeky said...
    That is such a great memory. Lovely.
    Peggy said...
    Been enjoying your stories. I just haven't taken time to post. Sammi hasn't delivered yet but Diva gave us 4 babies! Bossy Toes and Brown Robyn had a connection so we are looking forward to their offspring the last of June.
    Karen said...
    I'm loving all these little stories, and I'll bet they're much tougher to write than a long one...

    There's something for you over at my blog--

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