Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!
Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Charlotte is a Peach! (Charlotte Drops Off Food and other Anecdotes - Part II)

"Hi Charlotte!" I yelled across the yard.
"Hi Marc, the hummingbirds are still around!" my pint-sized 70-something neighbor exclaimed.
"I know, they are fattening up before they leave."
"Yes, pretty soon they be leaving south on their long trip for the winter."
"I read that they go to Mexico.  Do you wanna go with them?" I asked half-laughing.
"I can't go to Mexico, I don't like Mexican food." she said matter-
of-factly.
"Um, OK, how about they go to Mexico and you and I go to the Bahamas?" I replied.
"I'm there!" she yelled across the yard.

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John and I had just pulled up to the house and began to unload groceries from the car when we heard a familiar voice across the yard.

"John and Marc, get inside! There are major storms coming!!!" screamed Charlotte across the yard while frantically looking for Abby the cat.

"Ok thanks Charlotte!" I yelled back. I could see the advancing storms across the valley above Pottsville. It was angry dark and gray; menacing clouds were interspersed with streaks of lightning.

We worked quickly to get everything inside the house. I  glanced over from our deck and saw Charlotte in her kitchen. Abby the cat was sitting contently on her living room window shelf. OK, good, I thought, they are both in.

The rain started coming, not too heavy at first. Rumbles of thunder rolled through the valley.  Any sunlight was now hidden behind fearsome clouds. In the thirty seconds it took to transverse the living room to the kitchen, there was a knock at the front door. There was Charlotte standing at our door. I went down the stairs to greet her.

"I forgot to give you this," she stated as she thrust a tin foil wrapped loaf of something into my hands. "It's zucchini bread."

"Oh, OK, thanks. Charlotte, this could really have waited 'til tomorrow. It's gonna pour!"

"Nonsense!" she replied.
I didn't get another word in and she was already across the side yard to her house just as the heaven's opened and the downpour began.


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For two weeks over the summer, Charlotte was baking cookies, cakes, and breads for a volunteer church program that she was involved in. She would wake up at 4 am on the dot and begin baking for that day. She decided to experiment and use John and I as her guinea pigs. We didn't mind for the first week, but after 7 days of random baked goods, we found our waist lines beginning to grow. So for two weeks, Charlotte would sneak over at 5 in the morning and tie plastic bags of baked goods to our side-view mirrors so we would see them getting into the car that morning.

A couple of the items were winners such as more zucchini bread, banana bread, banana chocolate chip cookies, and lemon white chocolate chip cookies. Others I didn't care for such as ... Yeah, are you crazy? You think I'm gonna speak up when I have fresh baked goods being dropped off each morning? I loved everything!

She also got into a habit of leaving us random fruits and vegetables in baggies tied to either our front door knob, on the bench by the door, or tied around the car side-view mirrors. The random zucchini or cucumber, Bags of these incredibly delicious large oval cherry tomatoes. A bag of frying peppers for John. 1/2 pint containers of frozen chili for my lunch. Larger containers of homemade cranberry relish or cucumber salad.

And finally, one morning, Charlotte left each of us the largest, most beautiful peach with a lovely note. The peach was fragrant, deep red orange and yellow. My mouth watered. I saved it for a couple days and allowed it to ripen further. It was my only peach of the summer, and it was worth it. What did my note say, you may be asking? Well, Charlotte remembered that I cannot stand fuzz on my peaches and she had the thoughtfulness to wash my peach. I read the note and smiled all the way to work. That peach, and Charlotte, made my summer.

2 comments:

  1. Diana and I are fortunate to have excellent neighbors, but none, including ourselves, can compare with Charlotte. Having such a caring and entertaining neighbor is a blessing. Thank you for sharing her with your readers.

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  2. I have good neighbors... but one of the houses near me just went up for sale, (1138 Fawn Cove) If anyone knows someone who is looking for a home on a quiet road, little traffic, and lots of privacy,,, send them up this way. And oh yes, one more thing.... that person or couple needs to be able to cook and bake like Charlotte. Marc... does Charlotte have a sister or a daughter who is looking to live near Charlotte.... send her up here! Jack Ross

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