I kept thinking about my mom today. Not in a sad way, but in a holiday memory that, for some reason, I can’t seem shake this season.
We went chestnut picking a few weeks ago. I was particularly tickled about this little adventure because the memory that has been gnawing at me happens to be about chestnuts.
When I was about 9 years old my mother, having lived most of her life in New York, wanted me to roast chestnuts. She said that during the holidays you could buy them on every street corner. So she decided that she wanted me to have a holiday memory about chestnuts too. And boy oh boy, do I ever.
One afternoon around the holidays, my mother, her best friend, her best friend’s daughter and I roasted chestnuts. The problem was … we didn’t know how to roast them. We just threw them in the oven and baked them. Well, if you know anything about roasting nuts in a shell, you know that this requires some preparation. Like … piercing the shells so that the steam created inside the nut can escape and not explode … especially when your 9 year old is glued to the window of the oven watching them roast. Getting a glimpse of my memory now???
I can honestly say that at the time it was one of the most horrifying experiences of my short life. And certainly chestnuts exploding in my face was not exactly the Christmas memory my mother was hoping for. But it is a memory nonetheless. And quite honestly now that my 9 year old self has recovered from the trauma of the chestnut explosion, the adult in me thinks it’s all pretty darn funny.
I still haven’t quite figured out why this memory keeps popping in my head this year, but writing it all down certainly made me smile. Sometimes recalling memories with others, even if they weren’t there, makes things real. Tangible. Less dream like. Perhaps that’s what I needed … just a little validation.
Well, I hope you all have a day where you share a piece of you!!!