Monday, January 21, 2008

Back From North Carolina

It took two different flights but the entire family made it back from NC yesterday. The Emmer, CaJenn and I, were up and on our way to the airport at 4:30 am yesterday. All three of us flew to Cleveland where The Emmer and I continued on to Denver and CaJenn caught a different flight to San Francisco. The Bride was to follow on a flight from Greensboro/Atlanta/Denver later in the day.

It was the culmination of a sad week. One of those things that unfortunately seems to happen more often now that I am growing older. It was gratifying to see how many people came to the services and sent letters, cards and emails of condolences. Big Don touched an awful lot of lives and was a very respected member of the community.

I could not be in Winston-Salem, NC without visiting my most favorite culinary parlor...Mr. Barbecue. I wrote about Mr. Barbecue in a previous post and it is a ritual for me to eat lunch there whenever I am in the area. This time I brought The Bride, The Emmer, CaJenn, my brother #4 and The Bride's mother, Big Don's wife.

All of us except my brother #4 have eaten there on numerous occasions. I particularly wanted to see #4's reaction to the traditional meal, especially the red slaw which is a local variation on standard coleslaw. This slaw, which is circled in the picture to the right is made with a vinegar based sauce and quite honestly, it's an acquired taste. Like the locals, I have acquired it big time!

#4 heartily agreed that the barbecue was top notch but it would take him some time to get used to the slaw.....his loss....more for me!

CaJenn is quite fond of the hush puppies which she says are completely unknown on the left coast. Even with this fondness however, she couldn't eat her allotted portion...her loss...more for me!

The other ritual for me, when I am in the area, is a visit to Mrs. Hanes' cookie factory. Moravian cookies are one of nature's wonders and one of my gluttonous passions. All of Mrs. Hanes' cookies are hand made. A lot of food products claim that but I can tell you for sure that these cookies are HAND MADE. If you visit the factory, which is a relatively small building way out in the country between Clemmons, NC and Lexington, NC, you will see 10-15 women hand rolling these delectable delights to a thickness of about 1/16 of an inch! The miracle machinery in this factory is the wrists of the women who hand roll the dough. This is just a wonderful product and a fascinating small business success story.

I've been sending these cookies to my brothers as a Christmas present for over 25 years now. At one point I asked them if they were tired of cookies and would like something else for Christmas. I can't
repeat their exact replies but they did threaten bodily harm if I stopped sending the cookies.

Anyway, after a fulfilling meal at Mr. Barbecue, I took #4 to Mrs. Hanes' factory. It was like the pilgrim going to Mecca... #4 purchased several different flavors to try and left there a very happy man!

Back here in Colorado, it's cold with a forecast of more cold and snow, turning to colder and snowier. I believe the dinner forecast will be for chili. Oh well, it is January after all.

Thanks for visiting.


#1 said...

Glad y'all made it home OK. With regard to Mrs. Hanes' cookies ... should there be a Christmas without them ... well, let's just say that there would be MUCH more than mere bodily harm !!!

Marian said...

Dropping by to let you know that I awarded you "The Excellent Blog Award" today on my site. Congrats! Your friend, Marian :)


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