Tuesday, May 01, 2007

You say wahter, I say wooder

Renzulli's The other day our neighbor gave Jo a Fla-Vor-Ice (I dare you not to smirk at the kids pictured on that page), which immediately prompted one of those intense childhood memories: getting Italian ice from the convenience store a few blocks from our house. It was the kind that came packed in a small paper cup, with a flat top that had a semi-circular pull tab. After you picked your flavor (lemon, or strawberry if necessary), you fished around in the bottom of the freezer for the strip of little wooden paddles, wrapped in paper and linked end-to-end. You tore off enough for everyone and passed them around.

Then you walked back home savoring the ice--fast enough so that you didn't get stuck with too much syrupy goo to drink up at the end, but not so fast that you couldn't appreciate the treat. There were a couple of different eating methods: scraping the surface flat and even, or making a neat ring around the outer edge, or boring a hole into the center of the ice. You would never just attack at random, because the wooden paddle-spoon was key to the whole thing. You had to make good use of it.

When I reminisced about this ice our neighbor immediately asked where I'd grown up. It wasn't Mayberry, but it was a lot like our Mayberry is today. The good news is it was close enough to Philadelphia to have water ice, even if it wasn't fresh. Anybody else remember the packaged kind? Or something else regionally delicious from your childhood?

8 comments:

movin'mom said...

WOW I am finally someone's first! you gave me ideas for a post. I grew up going to my grandmas for traditional summer yummies I only got there. But I'll wait until I post!

O...I tagged you! Go to my site for instructions.

Christina said...

Yes, I remember Italian Ice, although it was pretty rare in my small Ohio town. It didn't come around until I was a little older, and we could find it buried in the bottom of the ice cream freezer at the convenience store. Still...yum.

Now we have fresh Italian ice stands here, and you can choose from over 15 flavors.

Reba said...

I don't think I have every had italian ice. I grew up eating snow cones.

BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) said...

We didn't have Italian Ice here in Tennessee. More like dripping popsicles in the back yard. I also remember Orange Crush in a bottle was a big deal. ;)

I also have fond memories of running through the backyard sprinkler. No slip 'n slide for me! Too fancy!

Lara said...

okay, i know this isn't really the point of the post, but i just have to say that your title reminded me of when i was a nanny, and my 5-year-old charge gave me a lecture about how i pronounced water wrong: "it's not WAHTER, it's WOODER!" crazy kid. :-P

Lisa said...

Oh what a cool memory to have! We grew up begging for snow cones. Mmmm.

Who did your new design. LOVE it. So very pretty and fun!

Mayberry said...

Lisa -- it was Karen Rani at Swank Web Style. I laughed when I saw your post saying "I'm over the pink" when I had just made everything pink!

Magpie said...

Marino's Italian Ice. And I remember eating it the same way, round and round, or drilling into the middle. Mmm.