Monday, February 11, 2019

Got Pickles?...Part One

****Author's note****

This is a new story! I can't believe it, either. It's been ages since I've written here, but I felt this is one story that needs to be told and not shared in a Facebook post. It's a multi-parter, so be sure to check back for part two.

Here's the essay:

Do you have an iron stomach? Is your intestinal fortitude stronger than Fort Knox? How about expiration dates? Do they mean anything to you? In my family, we have a running argument about dates, and most of the time it's 3-1 against me.

I was hanging out at Mom's house (she says hi in case you don't remember her since it's been so long since I've written on this blog) for the weekend when she pulled out the daughter-do-list. It was a short list because neither of us likes to do chores any more than necessary.

The main task on the list was to remove the canned goods from the top shelf in the pantry, which is located under the stairs while standing on the second step of the stepstool. Mom produced the stepladder and placed it right in the way of where I was going to be standing.

Me: "I don't need the stepstool."

Mom: "Why not?"

Me: "Because I can reach the top shelf."

Mom: "Yes, you do. I can't reach the top shelf without the stepstool."

Me: "That's fine, but I'm taller than you and it's just in the way."

Mom: "You don't need the ladder?"

Me: "Can you just move it out of the way, please?"

Mom: "Watch it! Don't you get smart with me?"

Mom moved the stepstool out of the way and I walked into the pantry and started handing her the canned goods, which were covered in dust and marked with dates from the last millennium.

"This is from 1998," I said handing her a pint jar filled with amber-colored mystery matter.

"Oh, let me see," she said. "Those are cinnamon pickles I canned from your Dad's garden. Wow! I didn't know they were still up there."

After my father passed away in 2002, Mom decided to remodel most of her five-room house. Over the next few years, she enclosed the carport, gained an upstairs, a bathroom, and a new kitchen. The highlight: the carport is now a greatroom the length of the house and has 18-feet ceilings.

Somehow, the long-forgotten canned goods had made the trip into the next century to be forgotten again, only to be discovered again and then be disposed of so the jars could be put back into the canning rotation. Or something like that.

"I bet these are still good," Mom said....

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