Sunday, February 26, 2012

Memories for Generations

Childhood memories are some of the best memories we hold in our mind. The pureness of a child's viewpoint coupled with our adulthood desire to hold onto our youth make those scenes in our head very vivid. They become more special when they're shared by other family members. It adds validity and detail along with smiles when with one another.

I share one of those special family memories with my dad, brothers and nieces and nephews. From time to time it comes up in conversation that reminds us of all the good times.

I can trigger this memory for my family, with three little words: soft boiled eggs.

A Sunday morning breakfast of soft boiled eggs with buttered toast was commonplace in the Esch home.

Even now, I can close my eyes and see my dad -- the Sunday-morning egg-maker -- carefully placing eggs in a battered Revere Ware pan, covering them with water, and placing it on the burner to bring the water to a boil.

While waiting for the bubbles of water to rise in the pan, he'd drop bread into the toaster until it was a golden-brown. Once buttered, he would then cut the toast into five or six strips, which were place in the bowl of our bright yellow boiled-egg breakfast bowls.

Once the bubbles of the boiling water started, dad would turn over the egg-timer and let the sand inside flow... breakfast was just three minutes away!

As last grains of sand slipped through the timer, the eggs were removed from the water, placing them in eggcups on our little bowls. When we were kids, he would tap tap tap on the shell to crack it for us, then run the knife through to pull of the end.

And there would be a bright yellow yoke, runny and gooey and ready for a sprinkle of salt and pepper followed by a toothpick to stir it up.

After saying a blessing, we'd take our little strips of toast and dunk into the egg. A delicious start to the day.

All those years ago we didn't realize that soft boiled eggs would be a memory shared by generations.

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