I have always had a taste for some very specific foods. My Nannie taught me the wonder of fresh corn, butter beans, cucumber salad and hot tea with a little milk. My neighbor taught me the goodness of freshly fried okra. Oh my! I can taste that right now. My Dad taught me the wonder of an unusual food-dill pickles. He was a pickle man. His favorite was a brand that was described as genuine dills. Not kosher. Not spicy. Not those little gherkins. Not sweet. He was a dill pickle man from the top of his head to his feet. His favorite snack was a chilled dill pickle that he would carefully cut into fat slices and a small stack of soda crackers. He would eat a slice and then eat a cracker. What can we say-he was a precise creature of habit. He also had his OWN jar of pickles. No one ate from his jar. Ever.
From the time I was a little girl, I loved pickles, too. Sometimes Dad would give me a smaller slice to enjoy. I loved them. So my Mom started to buy two jars of pickles. Because I was not as picky as Dad, she would frequently purchase a different kind of dill pickle. Sometimes she would buy slices because they were on sale. Sometimes she bought kosher ones. Sometimes she bought whole dills. I was fine with anything she bought. To me a pickle is a pickle. If they were those thin slices, I would fill a coffee cup with slices to munch on as a snack. Or I might fill a cup with slices to eat with a sandwich. My Mom even sent pickles in my lunch. That was hard because they were juicy and would leak. My lunchbox always smelled like pickles.
When I turned 8 years old, we had a family party for my birthday. I liked that the best. My Mom would always get a cake from Pat-A-Cake Bakery. It was a white layer cake with confectioners sugar icing and lots of roses on top. That was my favorite cake. After dinner, I would open presents from my parents and grandparents. Then we would have cake. Yum! That year, I opened a card from my Nannie. She always sent me money for books. Yay! And my Grandma would sent me a card with money, too. More books! I don’t remember what my Mom did for me because my Dad’s present just blew me away. It was a BIG box. And heavy. I could not imagine what it was. When I got the paper off, I found a huge GALLON jar of dill pickles! We all laughed and laughed about the pickles. I was happy as a clam. I had a ton of pickles to eat ALL BY MYSELF!!!
Happy Birthday to ME! The Official Pickle Birthday Girl!