The blackberries were in my backyard, so I figured I might as well...
|Sometimes, you just gotta do what you gotta do. That's what I always figure, anyway.|
But I never meant it to happen like it did - me, becoming famous and all. I wasn't trying to. I just decided one day to make a pie, and everything else kind of happened.
You see, there were berries in my backyard. Blackberries. A few years back, I'd thought it was a good idea to stick some twigs in the ground and grow me some. I never knew how quickly berries move in on ya and take over.
So, I sent my son, Ramon, out there to pick them. He conned a couple of his friends to join him, saying that if they picked berries with him, they could eat their fill. Soon half the neighborhood's kids were in my backyard picking those berries.
That was good, but the berry vines had spread under the fence. They'd done some climbing, too. So when the neighbors heard that the boys were harvesting, they asked the boys to come over and pick theirs.
Well, naturally, I felt guilty about them having to deal with all them berries. Even though it wasn't like I'd told those vines to take over and invade their plots, but I had started the first ones a growin. So, being neighborly, I told the neighbors that I'd bring them a piece of pie for all their trouble with the stickers and prickers in their backyards.
So, there I was knee-deep in flour and lard, sifting and blending and doing all those things one does to make a good piecrust light and fluffy, when Ramon brought in the first batch of berries. Why there were so many of them, they plum filled the bathtub. And my son told me that he wasn't near finished. He said he had a heap more to pick, and the boys out back were filling wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow and dumping them into the old above ground pool that we'd just emptied the weekend before.
Of course, I didn't believe Ramon could be serious. I clapped him on the back, gave him a bottle of good, old tap water, and sent him back to work. Then the friends started carting in load after load. Well, I filled all my sinks, and then the washing machine barrel. Next I told the boys just to dump those berries on a clean tablecloth I'd put down on the floor in the living room. I figured that could handle the excess until I had a chance to deal with it, but those boys didn't stop bringing in berries. They just kept right on dumping load after load until that poor heap of berries was a mountain right in the middle of my living room.
Well, when I saw that mass of berries, I just knew I had to make me some more pie crust. That's when I got out my canning pots and started mixing the lard and the rest of the ingredients, scooping flour up and dusting it all over like I was the sole provider of a high school bake sale.
Next, I hunted me up a pan a might bit larger than the one I'd planned to use, but there wasn't anything big enough to do what I needed it to do. I had to improvise. I constructed a pan by plopping the rolled out pie dough on the thoroughly cleaned, old sliding glass-double door that used to be in the family room. (I always wondered why I'd kept that thing around.)
I molded me an outer frame for the "pan" out of chicken wire and aluminum foil. It sure wasn't pretty, but it worked. The only thing is that, of course, it wouldn't fit in my oven.
That wasn't really much of a problem for a woman like me. If you've been raised in the great out of doors like I was, you know all about outdoor cooking. I started up a fire in the front yard that would have weenie roasted a football game full of hot dogs. Then I sugared them berries, shoveled them in, topped it all off with more piecrust, cut me some astericks for the air to escape, and sat down and enjoyed a big glass of iced tea.
Meanwhile, half the neighborhood moved over my way. Why if my front yard had been a boat, we'd have sunk. As it was, I ran out of chairs, but that didn't make no mind to them. I spread them guests all over the lawn, and we hooted and hollered and had us a real good time.
Most of the neighbors brought over some beer, and cokes and chips for the kids. Mabel, from next door, had a freezer full of Girl Scout cookies she was itching to get rid of. We nibbled on those and danced to some real good music, too, since Mabel's boys, who were trying to make it in the country circuit, came over for the rest of the afternoon.
That pie of mine started bubbling, and men folk from all around, drifted over, nose first. Then the police showed up wanting to know what all the fuss was about, but I knew they'd just been driving around with their windows down and smelled the pie.
All that was fine until the cameramen from some TV outfit dropped in. We all had to go change from our comfies into our social clothes then. Still, it made it pretty exciting, 'cause we were soon watching ourselves on the tele. While I was turning the pie and gauging its readiness, the TV guys went out and bought us some paper plates with flowers on them. I guess they figured if they did that I'd have to invite them over for some good old pie tasting. Of course, I would have anyway.
By the time the governor flew in via helicopter, that pie was good and ready. If it hadn't needed another five minutes to cool down so I could cut it, the president of the USA never would have made it in time to get himself a piece.
Anyway, that pie was mighty good, but I sure never expected my Saturday to get so all fired up busy. But, I'm sure, you know how it is. Sometimes you just gotta do, what you gotta do.