Hot charcoal mixed with hardwood chips; take your pick of apple wood or mesquite flavoring the humid deep fried Southern air. Gumbo and jambalaya in pots bigger than your oldest child take center stage. Baked beans and ribs purchased at a local joint because they have mastered the art of ‘Q’ and you really don’t want to stand around waiting for your meal, when all you really want to do is eat. Gallons of sweet tea wash down the sticky sauce you’ve just licked from your fingers, and then you spot it, a watermelon too big to be carried, it had to be moved with a forklift. Pat your belly and close your eyes because someone’s baked a peach cobbler and fresh churned vanilla ice cream is dripping off a paddle. Music, not your own, heard over a car radio with a deep bass groove. You reach out to family. Mosquitos reach out to you. Children in bathing suits run through water sprinklers on fresh cut grass in between parked cars and folding chairs. The sun is high and you want it to shine all day, but you can’t wait for the dusk because that means fireworks. Happy 4th of July America!
Copyright © 2011 Kimberly Yarbrough Carpenter
Music suggestion: Feel Like Funkin’ it Up! The Ultimate Rebirth Brass Band