6.05.2008

Oh, You've Just Gotta See This.

...But the only way you can see any of it...sorry to say, is in your mind's eye. For some reason, lately, no matter how hard I try to hold still, my camera is only shooting blurry pictures. I think it's just as well, in this case. It's all kind of embarrassing.
How many stories have we posted on here in the past, that describes the typical 'Cappy and Pegody' things that we mess up...BUTwithTHEbestOFintentions? Too many to regale you with just now.
It's a week now, til Cappy comes marching home again, hurrah, hurrah. Every day of his hitch out there in the wilds, he's asked me, "How does the garden go today, my Love?" "Any sign of the okra?" "How 'bout da cucumbers, and what about dem crook't neck squash?" We had so much fun planting them in the little square foot garden, laughing and being our usual silly selves. Three days later, on his tugboat, he was fretting over what was taking the seedlings so long to emerge. Finally on the fourth day, things started happening, much to his relief and delight. Today, the okra is growing elbow to elbow with one another in that bed, standing way taller than I am now. Imposing figures they be. Just as long as I get my okra, I don't mind how tall and loud they get, unless a giant comes crawling down outa the clouds on one of 'em. There are still a few okra stragglers, tho' just getting in the game, who are kinda short, doing the best they can, under the shadow of their much taller siblings.
We only planted three things in that little garden box. The okra, yellow crooked neck Summer squash and cucumbers. The cucumbers are on one end, with a trellis for them to grow up onto, and the newcomers to our yard, making a debut appearance are the squash, which have a very nice string web trellis, that Cappy wove with his nautical know-how, in loving anticipation of their arrival. When everybody was growing nicely, I told Cappy that the squash didn't seem like they were crooked in their neck area. He said, "Well, just keep an eye on 'em and make sure they get plenty of water and Miricle Grow". So I did, then I went to Aunt Gussie's, with the dawgs, and when I got back, four days later, I could hardly believe my eyes! Instead of everyone in the garden playing nicely, it was a jungle out there. There was a 'rumble in the jungle', as well. The cucumbers, instead of playing nice, and climbing on their trellis, had grabbed the okra by the throat, and the ones who weren't attacking the okra, were making a run for it across the lawn to visit the fig tree and the citrus trees. I put everybody back in their appropriate places, admonishing them to, "Procreate!...your own kind...I might be old-fashioned and not liberal enough for ya, but I don't want any of your new-fangled cu-figs or cit-cues or anything else like that, that you might come up with...I don't want anything fancy...just behave yourselves and stay in your own beds!" (Sheesh, you turn your back on anything these days...)
After the dust settled I realized something else was amiss. The crooked neck squash were amissing. Whaaaa?? Instead of the squash there were large, perfectly beautiful, juicy cucumbers. Oh ok...heh heh...I guess we'd gotten our seeds mixed up, planting them on the opposite side of the bed, than we had thought we had. I went to the other side of the bed to look around for the golden yellow squash. Cucumbers...more gorgeous cucumbers peered out at me from the dark underbrush bidding me come git 'em. Whhaaaaa??? More cucumbers? Does that mean no squash?? I looked again, sticking my head into the dense tangle of big prickery leaves and runners, practically climbing into the thicket myself. Cucumbers. Lots of 'em in all different sizes.
So. Here I am in the middle of of cucumber 'hayo'. For the last week I've been hauling out six or more a day; handing them out to neighbors and chawing down as many as I could manage every day. Now today, with six of them still in the fridge, sitting in there cooling their heels til I figured out what to do with 'em, I went out to the garden today and hauled in 16 more of the green clubs. Ya know...there is a limit. The neighbors are not going to think it's funny too many more times, my foisting cucumbers off onto them, in feigned good-nature. It's like when I lived in western NY; it was the same with zucchini. It got to where when you offered your neighbors some freshly grown tomatoes, they'd ask suspiciously, "How many zucchini do I have to take before I can have the tomatoes", because, instead of handing the tomatoes, first, one had to be weighed down with an armload of the caveman-club-sized zucchini. It seemed as though the tomatoes were really carrots on a stick, luring you into the trap. By the time you got home and compared the amount of zucchini you got, to the amount of tomatoes, the tomatoes seemed more like lagniappe. And it's still going on today! On any given Summer day, while taking a drive in the country, I don't believe you can drive more than a mile without seeing piles of zucchini left along the road like so much cordwood, with a sign, saying, "FREE". I've even been fooled, thinking I was stopping at a vegetable stand, but by the time I got parked and to the counter, expecting to find the little jar to pay for my selection of produce, I noticed there was no selection; it was just more piles of zucchini, free for the taking.
Presently, I'm not really doing anything; and as my mother would say at times like these, "Soooo, here I sit...". I'm waiting for the cucumbers. I hauled about of dozen or more of 'em to the kitchen sink, sliced them, mixed them with some sliced onions, in a dark blue speckled porcelain washpan, salted them down, stirred crushed ice all around in them, covered and pressed them down. Now I'm waiting.
I like to joke with Cappy, that most people say, "When life hands you lemons, you make lemonade, but down here in South Louisiana, instead, they make big poofy lemon merangue pie". And when life (aka mishaps of Cappy and Pegody) hands us cucumbers, sending us into cucumber "hayo", I intend, instead, to send us into bread and butter pickle "heaven". So now you get the picture :-D
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