Sunday, November 18, 2012

Spilled Secret

Look at all those unsuspecting faces...
Several years ago my children and ex and I were living in the cellar while we built a log cabin over our heads. My sister and mother had joined us for Thanksgiving dinner and things were cramped in the basement. Two adults, four children and thirteen dogs (eleven of them puppies) were crowded into whatever space was left around the furniture and packing boxes. Add two guests and a twenty-pound turkey and something was bound to happen.

Dinner was nearly ready. Northern Vermont is cold by November so the kids and their dad were out gathering wood to keep the cookstove fire burning. The table was set, the potatoes mashed, the cranberry sauce chilled. I lifted the heavy roasting pan out of the oven and as I did, the bird took flight. It landed at my feet in a great splash of grease and slid with astonishing speed directly toward the mouths of eleven startled pups.

Mama dove for the bird, dumped it in the sink and furiously pumped water over it. Out of the corner of her mouth she said, “Don’t say a word and no one will know.”

Until today, no one has.

20 comments:

Brian Miller said...

hahaha that is an awesome story....lol...and i can see it clear as day and have a big grin...glad you broke the silence...smiles.

June said...

What a superb Thanksgiving story! If eating food that has been in brief contact with a floor were something that could kill a person, nobody who's eaten in a restaurant would be above ground.

Molly said...

Hope you have better luck next Thursday......That story needed to be recorded for posterity!

Jean said...

Avec le traducteur , j'ai compris votre texte .
J'aime beaucoup .
Cette histoire est arrivée à mon épouse en sortant un gâteau du four de la cuisinière .
Je vous souhaite une belle journée .

With the translator, I understood your text.
I like very much.
This history(story) arrived at my wife by taking(bringing) out a cake of the oven of the cook.

Hilary said...

Oh what a great story. I'm so glad you shared it. The words "the birds took flight" had me grinning.

Meggie said...

Oh I laughed. It reminded me of my mother who was aghast when a chicken took flight to the floor. I scooped it up and told her to put it back in the oven for 5 mins & it would be sterilised again. We all enjoyed it!

Pauline said...

Brian - I can laugh about it now, too!

June - we had a hand pump in the sink; we were living without electricity or running water. No turkey was ever so thoroughly washed!

Oh Molly, I hope so too!

Jean - so glad you are coming to read once again. Seems we all have food on the floor stories!

Hilary - it seemed to fly out of the pan!

Meggie - practicality saves the day! And dinner!

Kerry said...

*Laughing!!* I bet that turkey tasted just fine.

Murr Brewster said...

Julia Child said the very same thing. She said that's why the kitchen has a door on it.

TexWisGirl said...

too funny! good mom.

congrats on your POTW!

goatman said...


Until now, that is. (But I won't tell)

Joanna Jenkins said...

Oh, I love that story! And your told it perfectly.

Happy Thanksgiving. Here's hoping it's uneventful ;-)

jj

Barbara Shallue said...

Oh, I love it! The best holiday story I've heard!!! Your mama was quick to get that turkey before the puppies knew what to do! Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving this year, too, Pauline!

Friko said...

You are not the only housewife who has kept such a secret. Far from it.

I still fish things out of the kitchen sink or from under the kitchen table. Naturally, they are always covered in dog hair, but what the heck . . . a bit of judicious sluicing and the food is as good as new.

Friko said...

You are not the only housewife who has kept such a secret. Far from it.

I still fish things out of the kitchen sink or from under the kitchen table. Naturally, they are always covered in dog hair, but what the heck . . . a bit of judicious sluicing and the food is as good as new.

Star said...

Ha ha ha what a story and I know how that feels because the same thing happened to me one year. Shocking isn't it. The floor was all slippery and dangerous - but - I didn't have 13 dogs to contend with! Now you've got that secret out, you can give a good chuckle on it!

Pauline said...

Thanks for the comments. This year was tame compared to that Thanksgiving. The bird behaved!

patteran said...

Brave of you to come out now! It's a great picture too.

Barbara said...

I too have fond memories of saves from the floor, many just before the startled dogs could realize what was coming. As someone I know often says, "A little dirt never hurt anyone." I'm sure your bird was delicious. I am always incredulous when I realize how primitive your living situation was and how well you managed to cope. I'll bet your children look back at those years as some of the best of their lives.

Peter Bryenton said...

The Waltons have nothing on you!