Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Pecans, Texas, Birthdays, and Destiny



(Follow me; it may be hard, but give it a try.)

I love pecans. I have always loved pecans. My grandparents had several giant pecan trees in the yard. There were always pecans on the coffee table, and this fantastic little pecan cracker that I spent many hours operating. I would sit happily shelling pecans for Grandma, stuffing paper sacks with nature’s candy, a squirrel’s dream and mine too. Cooked, raw, in pies or cookies, fresh off the tree, it really doesn’t matter how they are presented; I love pecans. There are little containers of pecans all over my house right now. Did I mention I love pecans?

(Major missing segue – but you’re still here, so that’s a good sign.)

I had a fascination with Texas from the time I could talk. Not sure if it was the steady diet of westerns I fed on or the fact my dad was doing rodeo stuff back then, whatever the link, I loved the cowboy way. This fascination followed me through the years. I remember meeting a friend’s mother for the first time and my jaw dropping. She was the tallest woman I had ever seen and she had huge hair. She was beautiful, tanned, and drawled Texas so thick; her “Pam” came out more like, “Pa-yam.” I loved Miss Joan. She was everything I ever thought about Texas rolled into one tall, big-haired beauty from just outside of big D. That’s Dallas in case you didn’t know, (sing it - big D, little a, double L - A, S.) Yep, loved me some Texas.

I have just discovered that these two things are related, my love of pecans and Texas, and are part of my destiny. It’s my wife’s birthday today. From the very first time I spoke to her, I sensed I had known her my entire life and many more lives before this one. People say we appear as two pieces of a puzzle, like we were made for each other in the giant puzzle factory in the sky, a matching set. My attraction to her was instantaneous. I have often wondered about that. Why, after years of ignoring and dismissing an attraction to women, would I suddenly say, “Yep, this is the one. This is the one for whom I will lose everything and gain so much more in return. This one will change my life.” And she did.

So how does my love of pecans, Texas, and a blue-eyed girl from Oklahoma prove there is such a thing as fate? Searching the 1956 headlines in the small town where my wife was born, I came face to face with my destiny. I knew the first time I heard my wife’s mother speak that I was honing in on something. When she says Deb’s name, it sounds like, De – yeb. Then I see the claim to fame of the little patch of earth southwest of Dallas, not far from Waco, where my wife was born. Yep, this was destiny – San Saba, Texas, Pecan Capital of the World.



I think that girl deserves a pecan pie for her birthday, don’t you?