I lived on a farm until I was about 10, and have never lost my love of the plain, hearty food we always ate. I prefer my potatoes boiled, mashed, and fluffed up with milk and butter. Dad always put a thick pat of butter on his after plopping it onto his plate with the "big spoon", and so did I.
"The big spoon." That brought back memories. In all the kitchen drawers, there was always only one Big Spoon. It was the spoon us kids wanted to dig in the dirt with so badly we just had to ask every day, "Mom, can I play with the Big Spoon?" even though we knew the answer would always be a loud, firm "No!..I only have one of those, and you're bound to lose it!"
But, we persisted, waiting for a miracle. And it happened! Auntie Bess inadvertently left her Big Spoon at our house on Thanksgiving. We rejoiced! After all, Auntie Bessie had now officially already lost her Big Spoon. The morning after Thanksgiving, with no school that day and a light, steady rain having made dirt into glorious mud the previous night, we entered the kitchen, visions of perfect mud roads, mud barns, mud pies in our heads, and, winking confidently at each other, asked, "Mom, can we play with the Big Spoon?"
Alas, the answer was still a Big No!
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