Saturday, January 17, 2009

A Southern Gal Remembers...

I grew up in South Florida.. in a wee little town that to this day if you blink your eyes as you are driving along, you would probably miss it.

Growing up in a small town had its perks I tell you.

We didn't have a lot of cultural events to attend in our area, so we had to create our own fun, or..wait until the Fair came to town!

Oh yes..then we'd have something to really look forward to.

Well..I was about 12, and my 2 sisters were about 9 when this particular event took place...Grab a cup of tea and set yourself down for a minute and I'll tell it like it was...
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My dad used to work in the groves at a really big orange grove in South Florida..his job was to run a back hoe all day long helping to clear out the canals along the trees and edges of the grove.

Many times he'd bring home some rather unique creatures for us kids to be able to raise..and well..this particular day was absolutely no exception.

Dad came home in the evenings from work at about 5:30/6 p.m. every evening and we kids would run to greet him, never knowing what surprise he might have for us.
This day was no different really(or so we thought)
... as he told us 3 girls to gather around onto the living room floor.

He told me to get in the middle of the other two girls(as I was the oldest, and was to be the one to open "the surprise")
and for all of us to set his lunch box in the middle of us, and to get our faces really, really close to the lunch box.

His lunch box was one of those big black ones that held quite a bit. (dad's was known to carry an RC cola and a moon pie ..by the way)

So there we 3 girls were all stretched out on the floor, excited as anything..with our faces as close to this big black lunch box as we could get

...and dad said to me..."o.k. now Tina Michelle...open that there box verrry slowly now..you don't want what I brought home for you girls getting away now"

So ..I slowly lifted the lid and there staring back at us 3 girls ....were 6 pairs of the biggest eyes you have ever seen!And then.... they leapt out at us!

You should have heard us girls screeching like banshees as we fled for the nearest exit!
One girl headed towards the front door, one headed down the hallway, and one of us headed lickety split for the back door.

Until it dawned on us.... yes indeedy! there those big bull frogs were a hopping around the living room, one landed on the kitchen table, another on the floor near the table..and the other just sat there in the lunch box looking around
...that yes!....
dad had just brought home frogs for the County Fair's frog race event!

Well..me..I wasn't brave enough to go handling those icky slimey things...but my 2 sisters got over the squeamies and found a bird cage to house those big frogs in.
(yes, they were that big...big swamp frogs actually)
And away to the fair we went a couple of days later.

One of the frogs wound up winning the trophy for the frog race..and since my granny had a crafts booth at the fair, we would sit with her during fair time as she sold her wares.

We had the frogs with us in the bird cage, and you should have seen how many people wanted to buy those "prize winning frogs"
Course some of the folks wanted to take them home and fry them up in a frying pan..cause after all they was "good eatin'"

...but my dad refused to sell them to anyone that declared that they wanted to fry them in a pan.

So..eventually a man came along that wanted to take them to raise in his pond as stock so that he could eventually have enough frogs to have frog leg fixin's.

So after he promised dad that he would not be eating those particular frogs..dad sold them to him for about $15.

So..yes..we had a bit of "country culture" back then..plenty of laughs and plenty of fun.... and hey...frog legs anyone???

~The Garden Goose~

7 comments:

Quinne said...

Hi Tina :) No thank you ma'am on the frog legs offer - lol! I enjoyed your story. Love, Q

Irma's Rose Cottage said...

What a cute story. I just love frogs. Ohh, not to eat, just to have.

Hugs:)
Irma

She'sSewPretty said...

What a fun story!! My brother's brought home frogs one time to raise. They had tons of them in aquariums. Oh my gosh...I wouldn't even go in the room.
Thanks so much for stopping by and entering my giveaway. Good luck!

lori said...

I loved the story. I grew up in a small town too. It definitely had its perks.
I remember me and my brother, a couple of times, raising frogs up from tadpoles we'd catch at the creek. It was so fun to check on them every day and see what was new.

Emily said...

Hi -

I just found your blog over at Mary Jane's farm -
you have some great stuff on here - can't wait to check it all out!

love, Emily

http://wideopenspaces.squarespace.com/

Corrine said...

That's so funny, my boys bought home tiny frogs just today...so tiny they sit on the end of your finger...must get a photo actually, we've had plenty of frogs and tadpoles in with the goldfish too over the years.

Alpaca Farmgirl said...

We lived in South Florida for years. Met my husband there. Thanks for sharing those memories!