The Joys of Eating Inside
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“All of it? You boiled it, right?”
“What do you mean, boil?”
“You’re always supposed to boil the chicken first!”
I pointed out that we didn’t boil chicken before roasting it. That was different, he said. To this day I don’t understand how.
In the short time we were having this debate, the bread and peaches were lost. It’s a wonder how quickly starch and sugar turns to ash on an open flame. Equally curious is how fast hot dogs can get those few tiny black specks that seem to render them untouchable to anyone younger than 15. One of the moms meekly asked if I wouldn’t mind boiling a few for the kids?
Again with the boiling?! If you have to cook everything inside before you cook it outside, why bother? I had exactly three uncooked hot dogs left and six kids. As they boiled, I pondered how this would play out. Then my daughter ran in. “Mommy, everyone’s getting bit!” Mosquitoes love stagnant water. It was dusk. Did I mention I lived across the street from a bay? They were the kind of mosquitoes you can hear coming from that bzzzing sound.
Nobody waited for an invitation to come inside. Sweet, starving Meg was helping me bring everything in. She’d gone up two steps when the railing gave way. Down she went, splat into the last muddy patch.
With all the commotion, the door had been left open, and now there was a tag team of mosquitoes dive-bombing my neighbors. Frantic efforts to swat them away resulted in several squished to my wall. Good thing I didn’t waste my time cleaning. Nobody even noticed the dust bunnies, what with watching me try to wipe bloody streaks off the wall. Who knew pterodactyl-sized mosquitoes stain flat paint?
Yes, we did become friends with the boss man and Meg. But we have an unspoken understanding: In the summer, we go to their house.