It’s Fondue Meet You
We are the Snapdragon Women, and we range in age from young to extremely old and blind. Each of us braves the elements every full moon so we can celebrate the sisterhood. Did you know that every full moon has a name and story? It’s true! Go look it up if you don’t believe me. This month is August, and we are celebrating the Hunger Moon. The celebration brings us back to our ancestors; we choose to live off of the land for three days and three nights. We do this to appreciate the labor of nourishment and the love that mother nature provides
My granddaughters Trinity and Rose, both young teens, jump in my Corvette and off we go. This will be their first meeting, due to their mother’s prior resistance. Wearing my children down is my specialty since they flew the coop so many years ago. My hopes are the girls will find other kindred souls at the celebration and choose to become members. An old lady can dream.
A flock of one hundred women dots the valley and hillsides gathering clovers, chickweed, amaranth, wild raspberries, cattails, and other editable growth. Day one festivities have begun! I clasp my hands over my heart, and it drops an extra beat. As an old lady, I cry more when I’m happy. So odd, old age is.
As extensive as a truck a tarp lays in the middle of the campsite. Like beads being tossed at Mardi Gras, plant after an edible plant is thrown through the air, landing on the tarp creating a mountain of food for us all to share. What a sight! Living off the land for three full days. The elders, I guess that means me now too, divide the foraged food to put in large sharable bowls. I notice some mint and think how beautiful it would go with goat cheese as a dessert, though we don’t have much cheese so I stash some of the mint in my pocket to create a special treat for us silver-haired queens to ingest tonight while the others are sleeping. That’s another thing I don’t do well anymore, sleep at night.
Night falls and my granddaughters snooze away along with most of the Snapdragons. I tell Marge to get the goat cheese, she jumps up and brings it back along with some lemongrass.
“Oh this will be nice,” I say to her. Our other friends Beth and Sue join us by the crackling fire. I mix the herbs with the cheese, and we all take turns scooping some out. About 30 minutes after our treat I notice a meteor shower starting, or is it that I’m swaying?
“Wow, do you see that Beth?” Sue says as she leans back on the log, further and further until she falls backward onto the grass. She starts to convulse in laughter.
“Sue, ya old coot. What’s wrong with you?” Beth stands up and takes two steps sideways toward the fire. She puts up her hands, eyes wide, the fire brightens her face to an orange that makes me think she looks like candy corn. The thought of this makes me laugh. My face tightens, and my forehead feels like I have static zinging out of my skin.
“Oh heavens!” I say between snorts. “What was in that cheese?” I look over at Marge who is waving her hands in the sky and looking up at the stars.
“I think I just peed a little. Make — the laughing stop!” Sue says, still flat on her back behind the log. I can only see the soles of her Tevas.
“Salvia! Salvia!” Beth shouts, trying to take baby steps back to her log and away from the fire.
“Saliva?” My stomach hurts from the tightened muscles and hooting laughs coming from me.
“Shhhhhhahahaha! Shhhhh. You will wake everyone, and they’ll know we’re goofed up,” Beth says, rather seriously. As serious as candy corn can get.
“Yes, Salvia. It’s a plant that can make you hallucinate! Who put this in there?”
Realizing my mistake, one a wise elder should not have made is too much; I try to button my lips shut, but the huffs of air trying to smother my delight won’t allow it. “Me,” is all I can muster. I can’t look at Beth, and I can’t even see Sue, she is still laying on the other side of the log tangled in her own giggles.
“I think a mole just ran over my hair,” Sue whispers – then gasps. “What if all its mole friends think I want to eat them. I’m a vegetarian!”
“Shut up Sue. No one cares about your mole problem! Period!” Beth is irritated and grasping the log with both hands, her feet spaced apart as if she might fall…and then she does. Her hands don’t come up from the wood, her body slowly leans forward until her head is inches from the ground. With a grunt, she hits the ground and then snakes forward so that her buttocks is straight up. With a grass-stained forehead, she looks up at Marge and me.
We sit still. Unsure of how to respond, until our body’s natural abilities kick in and we laugh so hard they could hear us 3 states over.
“Granny? Are you okay?” One of my granddaughters has snuck up on us, giving Marge and me a jump. Sue and Beth struggle to their feet.
“Oh, sorry honey. Yes, we are fine. Just having some fun. Girls, this is my granddaughter Rose.”
“It’s fondue meet you,” Sue says with a grin.
“Did you say fondue?” I cackle and my muscles in my face contract again. Tears run down my face, and I start to try to breathe like a Lamaze student. “This is the best Snapdragon meeting — in the history of all time!”
Author’s note: It is true that each full moon has a name.
The following flash fiction is inspired by prompts from Daily Flash Writing Prompts found on Facebook. While there are no rules, I thought I’d try to be creative and use the full list of prompt words in one short flash fiction. Prompts are below.
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