Why is this blog called "I Found a Peanut"? Look for life's richness & mystery as you travel--see "The Peanut Man", below. Taste life!
The Peanut Man
The morning is cool, a mist rising off the land. Just past dawn, still sleepy. But you're moving on down the road anyway.
There, under the trees, steam rising from the boiling pot, blending into the wisps of fog. The peanut man.
With the sun still barely tipping over the rounded earth, and the early morning cries of birds, the crossroads up ahead, you think: what did Robert Johnson first see when he met up with the devil? The fire glows hot as the peanut man smiles, chanting "hot boiled peanuts, fresh, sack 'em up. Hot boiled peanuts."
He hands you the sack, wet, hot, tempting with the fullness of hot boiled peanuts. You both smile, changing your money, fragile slip of paper, for what he has to offer: heat, a crunch, a taste like no other, the peanut, extraordinary food.
You hop back in your car. If you're smart, you find plenty of towels, paper or otherwise. Peanut bag goes in your lap, warming you.
Scoop out a hot boiled peanut. Here's where the juice begins, for real. If you know hot boiled peanuts, you don't crack open the peanut and transfer the meat to your mouth.
No, put the peanut in your mouth. Bite down. The warm, salty water, rich with the taste of peanut rushes across your tongue.
Lap your tongue around the peanut and shell. Suck. This is what life tastes like, meaty, salty, and warm, rich.
Remove peanut and shell, extract peanut. Toss shell somewhere. Return peanut, bare, naked, to your mouth. Taste it fully as you chew, the earthy taste of the simple peanut. Packed with protein, served with panache in that cradling shell, the peanut is about as good as it gets in the simple goodness of life.
If you've found a peanut, a whole bag of hot boiled peanuts, you've found food, warmth, sustenance, an entire culture, and something to muse about as you journey on.
Not to mention peanut shells to throw at your brother or buddy. Doesn't matter. The essence is the peanut, rich, rolling in the currents of history, from the Delta to the dawn of a new techno-millenium.
Brother Peanut is going along for the ride. And the peanut man, he'll always be out there, somewhere. No matter how long or hard the trip, suddenly, you round a curve, and there he is, smiling over his pot.
Think I'm doing a good job? I'd love some fresh tea, thanks!
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