And this little piggy…

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 11, 2004

Sorry, readers, you know by now I swing off at times and let things fall where they may. But I’ll explain.

This all started when a good friend called to ask if I’d care to go to a &uot;pig pickin.&uot; No &uot;g&uot; on that word. It loses if you say &uot;picking.&uot; Now I began to think about this. Why should I pick (but I got elegant and said &uot;select&uot;) a pig? What would I do with it? Where would I want a pig? Then I was told the pig would not be mine. Thank goodness. I’d have to trouble naming it. Does it come male and female?

I was told to be patient. Be ready at 2 p.m. Okay, I’ll be waiting. Please keep in mind I’m from the north. The only pig I knew was Porky Pig and I didn’t know him personally – nor his girlfriend either.

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So at 2 p.m. off we went. This astonishing event was here in Smithfield at the home of a chaplain and his wife – Rev. and Mrs. Thomas and Joann Reynolds. We found about 25 guests already there. The host heard his foreigner, me, asking questions so he took me to view the departed pig. In a heavy metal arrangement that looked like a furnace was said pig split down the middle being cooked on a whole bottom of hot coals. Must say it sure did smell great. Doubt the pig was at all impressed. What a sight. You may not find it extraordinary but it was a new world to me.

The Wilroy Baptists sent their own bus loaded with the Sunday School members. Deep study and concentration deserved a pig pickin occasion. They loved it. So did I. About 3:30 new group came in. There’s always room for more guests when Southerners serve. The two furnace-like compartments contained other foods beside the one holding the pig. The service was and hospitality were far superior to any I’ve seen so far.

The Rev. Reynolds works at Obici Hospital. I’d suggest he bring some of that pig and most of all some of the fantastic desserts found at his home Saturday. If that didn’t cure whatever they, the patient, had, then just give it up! Nothing will help. Dessert was brought. No yelling at me, but southern cooking (some of it) leaves me cold. You can say it about northern cooking and I won’t get mad. I promise. Whoever made the lemon cake and the chocolate cake there can have me as a life friend. Fit for a king or a queen. Make it for me anytime.

This whole session was strange to me so please think it’s critical at all. Let me get used to a split pig cooking and tasting so great and don’t forget the lemon cake. Under these conditions I’ll forgive anything or anyone.

Florence Arena is a resident of Magnolia Manor in Smithfield and regular News-Herald columnist.