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Topic: Savory to the Taste (07/26/12)
By Connie K Cameron
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The focal point of many of my memories is food. From my earliest memories of my German Mom and my American dad, who met Mom when he was stationed in Germany, in the Army. My two brothers and my two sisters, even my pets, All of those old memories center around food. To my teenage years, in the 70’s when I had a lot of problems, but We also had a lot of love and a lot of good food.
Our family traveled every other summer from as early as I can remember, to my last year in high school. From California to Las Vegas then to Iowa and on to Canada. My Dads relatives all lived in Iowa and my Moms relatives lived in Canada, where they all moved to from Germany.
One particular summer, I was about 10 years old. We usually left California to drive through the desert in the evening when it was cool. We had an old Rambler in those days and it didn’t have an air conditioner. This summer we left earlier than usual and we got to Las Vegas just about dinner time, so my parents thought it would be a good idea to eat in a casino. The problem was that casinos geared their menu toward adults taste. It took a long time to find something on the menu that I would eat, unfortunately what I got wasn’t great for my young taste.
Well, I made it through dinner and it was time for dessert, I loved dessert! If we could have a nice dessert, the whole night would be okay. I just couldn’t understand what all these things on the menu were, what is wrong with these adults, I thought to myself, couldn’t they just serve up a big bowl of ice cream?
Finally my Dad said, “Custard!” custard, was just like pudding, he told me. So I jumped at that, “Yes, Mom and Dad, I’ll have custard.”
It came to the table, and it looked strange, but I was hopeful. I took a spoonful and, “Oh Dad, this tastes like eggs!” I knew then that my night wasn’t going to be a good one. But since then, I’ve learned to love custard, and every time I have a bowl, I think of my Dad.
On another vacation, we were leaving Canada, on our way home to California. Grandma, filled up a cooler for the seven of us. Dad was driving and he asked Mom for a sandwich, it was then that Mom noticed that the ice was leaking and getting the food wet, so we pulled over to fix the problem.
We had a bite to eat while the food was out. Mom put the food away and we were back on the road. Dad, driving again said, “Some strawberry pie would be nice.” Mom opened the ice chest to get the pie, but it was missing! “Where is that pie?” mom asked, then my sister, Carol yelled, “It’s all over the window, Mom!” We forgot to put that good strawberry pie back in the cooler it had been on the car roof, and now covered the side window!
Vacation and food just seem to go together. I loved to be co-pilot when my dad drove. We would sing old songs and I would serve him coffee. And the food, it always tasted better in the middle of the night. Singing old songs, eating sandwiches, and driving under a blanket of stars, what a wonderful memory.
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