|Summer. Say ahhhh!|
It’s summer time in Northern Alberta.
The snow is finally gone. (It’s nearly July. No self-respecting snow bank would dare stay past the middle of June.)
And the people have emerged into the glorious, life-giving sunshine.
That’s exactly what we were doing yesterday.
It was the final day of school for three of my grandkids and celebrations were in order.
A school picnic with friends and family on the school grounds.
We talked and laughed and reminisced about the past year.
Ate hot dogs and bags of chips and drank small containers of chocolate milk.
And then they brought out the Dixie ice cream cups.
My daughter handed me one to feed my granddaughter, seated on my lap.
I pulled off the cardboard lid and, just for a moment, I was remembering all of the times in my childhood that celebrations ended with those little servings of creamy deliciousness.
In a paper cup.
With a small, wooden spoon.
Special school events when I had finished eating whatever Mom had packed in my lunch kit.
And the teacher brought out the large box of little cups with the long strip of paper-packaged wooden spoons.
Church socials when my tummy was groaning with all of the good things I had just stuffed into it and I was sure I couldn’t possibly eat another bite.
Until the Dixie cups showed up.
All of them ended with those little paper cups of cool, creamy, delicious ice cream.
I looked down at the cup in my hand. White. Vanilla. Just starting to melt around the sides.
I took the little wooden paddle and dug in, then handed it to my granddaughter.
I know what you’re thinking and no, I didn’t take the first bite myself.
Though I wanted to . . .
The slightly rough feel of the wooden spoon on your tongue.
The sweet cream melting and filling your entire being with joy.
The bottom being just slightly too near the top.
That occasional ecstatic moment when a second round appears.
Oh, there were differences.
The cup I held was plastic, as opposed to the light cardboard that used to be.
And the little wooden spoon was mostly a paddle with no distinct ‘business’ end.
And the product inside didn’t have quite the ‘cream’ that I remember from my childhood.
But still, it was delicious. (Yes, I did finally sneak a taste.)
And when the man came around and offered us two more?