Seasonal living and the sensual, sensate life.

To Susan

Mother’s Day and snow is falling on the Front Range, after six days of rain.  The world is wet and cold.  Still a robin woke me at 430 this morning with its frantic good-morning song.  The day feels bleak and strange and a little empty without my own mom, who has been gone for four months.  For so many years while she was sick, she was the weight I carried.  Now, her absence is an equally definable something in my days.
 
Of course she is on my mind and in the food I’m eating too.  Yesterday, I had a craving for mom’s famous baked clam sandwiches, a mixture of canned minced clams, cheddar, and mayo baked until gooey inside foil-wrapped hoagies.  It seemed just the thing to eat on a soggy day, along with way too salty Lays potato chips, onion dip, and iced Pepsi.  All things my mother loved.   
 
I rarely eat beige food—bread and chips and dairy—at all, let alone in such quantities.  But by now, I knew the ghost of my mother was gasping audibly with pleasure—“Ah!—the same way she would whenI brought her cupcakes.  Back at home, I quickly sautéed the onion until brown in scandalous amounts of sweet cream butter and let it cool while I assembled the sandwiches.  While they baked in a 400 degree oven, I mixed the cooled onions and butter with sour cream and Worcester. 

 

The Thing Itself

Greg and I toasted with the Pepsi, the very last thing I fed to my mother as she was dying.  “To Susan,” I said, as I bit into the satisfyingly crunch and cheese of the sandwich.

 



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