Written by Debbie Sloan
Edited by Mandi Pitt-Reed
David and I booked our rooms in Nashville months ago in anticipation of the total solar eclipse. Here in the Memphis area the eclipse was not going to reach totality so we wanted to be in an area where we could see this once-in-a-lifetime event in its marvelous totality. We were not disappointed. Our son Jordan invited us to the Edison School, where he is a teacher, to view the event. His lovely wife Mandi joined us as well. Although school was not in session, many of the kids came to view this spectacular event and enjoy the special activities.
As the moon began its transit across the sun many changes occurred around us. The cicadas, crickets, and grasshoppers began their evening songs just as the sky dimmed only a tiny bit. These critters must be quite sensitive to light because the sun looked like a cookie with a bite out of it when they began. Next, the temperature dropped and we could feel a slightly cooler breeze. Word has it that, down the road a bit, sheep headed to the barn for their evening meal. Once the moon completely covered the sun, it disappeared from our view while wearing the special glasses. This is when we knew we could view it in its magnificence without the special glasses. It was strange to see nothing but the corona during the couple of minutes of totality. Jordan had uv-light-sensitive beads, among other activities, that turned colors while in the sunshine. During totality, they changed completely back to white. The darkness, although expected, still felt strange. The air cooled about 10 degrees and the breeze made it truly feel like a summer night, even though it was early afternoon. The 360-degree sunset was spectacular. We could see the brilliant reds and yellows on the horizon all around us. This total solar eclipse will live in our memories forever.
After the eclipse, Mandi’s parents, Cindy and Eddie, invited us to eat dinner with them. Cindy cooked fresh squash, fried corn, mashed potatoes, and meatloaf. She also had fresh homegrown tomatoes that Eddie bought at the local farmers market. There is nothing better than home-cooked food from the local area cooked to perfection! Mom always said that all vegetables taste better when they are in season. I couldn’t agree more. This meal brought home many childhood memories of similar meals prepared nightly from fresh vegetables bought off local folks who drove their pickup trucks around town loaded with veggies for sale or given to us by neighbors who enjoyed sharing the fruits of their labors. Cindy topped off the meal with a divine fresh peach cobbler with ice cream. Cindy and I talked about the recipe for this cobbler that each of us inherited from our mothers. Each generation simply passes this recipe to the next and none of us knows where it originated, but we do know it always turns out and is a universal pleaser! Cindy cooked hers in an iron skillet. Here’s a photo and, yes, it tasted as good as it looks!
Here’s the recipe:
1 cup self-rising flour (or 1 cup all-purpose flour with 1-½ tsp baking powder and ½ tsp salt)
1 cup sugar
1 cup whole milk
1 stick of butter
1 15 oz. can of peaches or any tasty fruit.
You should use canned fruit rather than canned pie filling for this recipe and don’t drain the canned fruit. The extra liquid keeps the cobbler moist. Cindy used fresh peaches. I used canned in my version.
This recipe is so simple, I am only going to list 1 step!
Preheat the oven to 375o F. and melt butter in the baking pan. Mix flour, milk, and sugar in a separate dish. Once the butter is melted and sizzling, pour the batter mixture into the pan. Pour in the fruit and bake at 375o until bubbly, golden, and mouth-watering (about 25-35 minutes).
Let’s just say that if the cobblers went to a dance party, Cindy’s cobbler would be the belle of the ball and mine would be a wallflower! Although mine isn’t as lovely as Cindy’s it almost, but not quite, tasted as good!
After dinner, we repaired to the outside pool deck to watch Jordan and Mandi swim. I really wish I had taken my swimsuit as the pool was cool, blue, and so refreshing looking! I did step in on the pool step to let the cool water rush over my feet but it would have been so much better to simply jump in! Overall, it was a near-perfect day!