Today was a day I've looked forward to all summer--I ate green beans! And not just any green beans mind you but picked-it-myself-from-my-own-garden green beans. They were simply delicious!
Growing up I thought green beans were instruments of torture invented by mothers to ruin summer mornings. I swear green bean season started in June and didn't stop till after Labor Day and school was in session. And if it wasn't our long rows that needed harvesting then it must be the day to pick Grandma's beans. Argh, the silly things were everywhere.
I hated the whole process. I would be bent over the rows for so long my legs would start shaking. Then I swear my sisters went slow on purpose just to irritate me. And what are green beans made of anyway...Velcro? Every expired daddy-long-leg, dead leaf, and white, weed parachute-thingy were plastered to them. Gross. And earwigs...don't even get me started on those since it's amazing I've made it into adulthood without serious therapy regarding earwigs and my childhood.
And call me sadistic, but I got a small thrill every time I pulled on a bean and the entire plant accidentally came with it. I guess it was my kid way of sticking it to "the man" or more rightly "the bean." I would just tuck the offending plant under the others and keep on going...but now with a sinister twinkle in my eye.
Oh but picking them was only half the fun because there was still snapping to look forward to! Brown grocery bags full of green beans taunted my sisters and I. None of us liked to head and tail them, snapping was much less tortuous, so we would take turns. If Mom helped out, we gave her the pleasure of head and tailing--it was her fault after all.
We even devised a "who got to snap the last bean" game. We would actually hide a bean (or two) and bring it out at just the right moment to be the last one to snap. Strategy was everything. Looking back I'm sure it must have been our sun-addled minds at work.
Now here I am years later celebrating the fact that my garden has finally produced its first batch of beans. My only regret is that I didn't get to torture my own children...with Josh being allergic to anything green and outdoors, and Christina coming into the family at 16 (which is way too old to begin properly grooming her for bean-picking duties) the burden of bean harvesting is still up to me. Love it!