I like squash. It's crunchy when raw, delightful when thinly-sliced, lightly-floured and pan-fried, and we are growing some in our backyard. Moreover, The Alpha doesn't particularly like them, so he only had one bite of Squash One, pictured below with Cucumber Two:
(If you click for the larger image, they're pretty close to Actual Size.)
I ate Squash One raw, sliced up and sprinkled with a little bit of Greek seasoning (no, not made with actual Greeks). Now I have a tummy ache. I hope it's just my body freaking out because I ate something so fresh and good for me. This reaction hasn't happened with the cukes, though, and they fit the same two categories, don't they?
Seems that our squash yield won't be quite match the stuff of legend. Most of the plants aren't doing too well. We may have another squash to harvest tomorrow or Thursday, but after that it'll be a while. The good news: the cukes appear to be gearing up for some serious bounty. So much so that The Alpha might attempt pickling a few.
They are the pickling variety, but not because we planned to pickle them. It's because they're the kind my mother used to grow, and thus the kind I like to eat -- chilled, peeled, and sliced in half lengthwise with just a dash of salt on top.
Today it's been exactly two decades since my mother died. Some years, it's a tough day. Hasn't been so bad this time. I realize there's no way I'd have a garden in my backyard if it weren't for The Alpha -- it's his project. But it still helps me feel a connection to my mother, whose plants all followed her to the earth (the rest of us aren't so green-thumbed). I faintly remember my dad bringing some of the last produce from her last garden back to cook at my grandmother's, his mother's, house (I never went back to our little house myself, using my supposed tender age to my advantage and letting adults clean out the temporary dwelling that was supposed to be allergy-free and make her well, but didn't). I think I at least helped with eating it. I think there was eggplant, which we would have sliced up and fried like yellow squash. And probably tomatoes. Because there were always tomatoes. I had not yet acquired a taste for them at twelve, though.
But now we have tiny little green tomatoes on huge plants that I didn't realize would be five feet tall. And when they turn red, if the bugs don't get them first, I'll help eat them. And then later we hope we'll get to really enjoy that cantaloupe (if it didn't get cross-pollinated and decide to taste like a cucumber... the cucumbers don't taste like cantaloupes, so that's something!). And then okra. And maybe beans, if they ever flippin' DO anything... meanwhile, The Alpha is already considering expansion for next year... root vegetables.
So, I don't really know where I'm going with this post. I'm just sayin'.