Snow Balls, Bicycles & Childhood Memories

Initially I came over to post woah is me & i feel so blah. But after looking at my flickr account I realized there is a story to tell and a moment to reflect on. So, pardon me while I wax nostalgic. :)

Growing up was silly, serious business in my family. I came from a good sized family who were cut from the same mold and reveled in time spent together in all seasons. Summers by the pool and the white waffle lawn furniture sticky from all the watermelon and red kool-aid.  Falls spent picking the garden together till dusk. Winters spent cutting wood for fireplaces in which we snuggled around. Spring was for planting and running through the fresh cut grass. For making crowns from monkey grass and dandelions and making mud pies.

But when I was small a calling led my family from my red Georgia mud roots to a sweepy, moss covered, soulish New Orleans. Where it was hot and humid when it was hot. Where it was wet and cold when it was cold. Where it could flood in the morning and make you swelter in the heat by lunch. It's in this beautiful town where I climed oak trees like jungle gyms, learned to drive a boat and eat shrimp and crawfish the right way. New Orleans is where I really had my childhood. Summers were still spent weeks at a time with my family in Georgia. I always called Georgia home, but now reflecting back, New Orleans holds such a sweet spot in my spirit.

When you're a kid you tend think everyone has money and there is nothing but time to stop you from doing something spectacular. My parents were so creative to keep us busy without spending much money! We fed bread to seagulls at the docks on Lake Ponchartrain and had picnics of Rally's hamburgers and french fries. We would park on stormy days on a concrete island type parking lot and let the waves crash over our anceint Ford van. We went to City park and played on the mossy oak trees and watched the ducks paddle through the lilly pads. We rode the fairy across the mighty Mississippi and I cried because my dad told me that fairies weren't real. I was so confused that we were going to ride a fairy, when they weren't real. We rode our bikes to school every morning. In fact, we rode our bikes everywhere.

It's strange how you don't realize until you're older the things that were really special to you as a child. Those bike rides were my childhood. We would ride to the Winn-Dixie and get necessities. We would ride the leeve to the Kenner Peir. We would ride through the ancient oaks in Harahan. We even rode our bikes to downtown New Orleans, well almost. We got a few miles away and decided to turn around.. it was a long bike ride from home!

One of the best places we would ride bikes to was Droopy's Snow Ball Stand or Ro-bears Snow Ball Stand. Both of which were right next to and across the street from my beautiful elementary school. I can't begin to tell you the combinations of flavors you can try on a snow ball, and if you've never had one, then you are truly missing out on a cup of Heaven. Anything from Orange Dream stuffed with Ice Cream in the middle or my brother's favorite Chocolate with Condensed milk on top! Or Wedding Cake, Spearamint, Tiger Lilly, Cotton Candy, Fuzzy Navel, or Pina Colada! There are so many different flavors, but one thing I know for a fact is this: If you ever have a sno-ball, you will love them for the rest of your life.

Last week on our anniversary trip we rode bikes and got a snow ball. Honestly, it was the best vacation I've had... and that's because it touched a part of my soul that still believes in fairys and that my daddy is superman. Something that reminds you of who you are and where you come from. Something that eases the woahs of this life and brings joy back to tired eyes. I wish I had a bike and a sno ball machine, life would be so much more grand. :)

(Reading this article while searching for pictures of Droopy's & Ro-bears made me cry a little. Sno-balls must be a part of growing up in New Orleans, as even the author of this article gets a bit poetic.)

What parts of your childhood make you wax poetic?


Elis said...

This is beautiful! You even made me tear up! ;~;
I just started making weekly posts on Sundays about things from my childhood that I remember fondly, so if you're curious, you can check them out at my blog. :)

I've always wanted to visit Louisiana but have never been able to...I hope I can get down there before I am too old to enjoy it! We have snow balls here too but we call them sno-cones instead. I was pretty much obsessed with them as a kid...you could always get them for a dollar from the vendors at the carnival that comes through here each summer. I still love sno-cones but don't have as much opportunity to get them now....and of course your post made me crave one! ^^

ckscribbles said...

can you send me a snow-ball in the mail?! sounds so yummmmy!

Lanetra said...

I wanted to ask do you have the recipe to make the snowcone? look yummy!