Growing up in South Carolina, I probably saw snow a handful of times in my formative years, always a wet, slushy mess. On my fourteenth birthday, it snowed several inches. I remember getting out and playing in it with my then-boyfriend. Because it was little more than barely frozen water, our regular clothes were soaked within minutes, causing us to run back inside to warm up. Investing in snow gear for the once-every-few-years white blanket that was usually gone by morning was preposterous. This IS the South.

It’s hard to imagine it, but think – THINK – about July. You know July. You were just complaining about its blistering heat and oppressive humidity a few short months ago. Especially if you live anywhere near me.

We didn’t have central air conditioning in my house growing up. The whole place was cooled by a window air conditioning unit in my brother’s bedroom. It blasted down the hallway, the air more warm than cold by the time it hit the kitchen at the opposite end of the house. To deal with the heat, I let ice cubes melt in my mouth and did as little as possible, reading being the coolest activity I could find.

One white-hot summer day, my Mom called me to come outside. She was in the storage room, and I could hear her yelling through the thin kitchen wall. Because the washer and dryer were out there, I thought she wanted me to come and help her bring the clothes inside.

After pretending I didn’t hear her for at least five minutes, I finally dragged my lazy behind off the sofa and went out there, my bare feet sizzling like fresh bacon on the overheated concrete carport. Whining and complaining with my most diva-like airs, I came into the storage room…………..and was hit squarely in the face with a frozen snowball.

My Mom scraped up some of the last snow we had and saved it in the outdoor freezer. She probably planned that ambush for months and months, and I’m certain that I was always her intended target. I never knew she had snow in there, even though I visited that freezer quite regularly. It was the same one that housed my poor dead pet cow Boo’s pieces and parts, after all.

So, if it happens to snow where you are today, scoop some up and save it. It will be a welcome treat come July.



Because I received several requests, I have included the excerpt of Dad’s StoryCorps interview on his role in the race riots at the University of Georgia in 1961.

For readers unfamiliar with that part of American history, I will give a brief synopsis.

Much of the Southern United States was racially segregated until around 1960. Where I live in Charleston, one can still see remnants of the segregated era, from a separate ‘colored’ entrance on an old theater downtown, to a wall that divided waiting rooms at the train station. We don’t use these things anymore, but the layer is there.

The Federal government forced desegregation in the South in the early 1960’s. Southern universities, which had historically been all white, were required to admit people of color for the first time, and many of the other separate barriers mentioned above were abolished. In the South, it was not a popular position, and it led to unrest, like the riot at the University of Georgia, in which my father played a key heroic role.

His story is about six minutes long. Set it to play and listen while you do something else at your desk. It always gives me chills to hear him tell it, and I’m very proud of him for standing up and taking what was, at the time, a very unpopular position.

Click here for Dad’s story about the UGA race riots.



Growing up, I never understood Dad’s fascination with the Moon Pie. Soft cakes filled with marshmallow cream and covered in chocolate, they are a Southern tradition that tasted like cardboard to me. Still, Dad ate boxes and boxes of the things.

I never knew the Moon Pie originated close to where Dad grew up. Chattanooga, Tennessee. As soon as we drove into the city yesterday, he started pining.

Golly. I sure would love to get me a Moon Pie and an RC Cola.

Riding up Lookout Mountain on the Incline Train……

A Moon Pie sure would be good with this view.

Eating lunch…..

I’m not hungry for much…..Can we get a Moon Pie?

At the Moon Pie place……

A double decker. Make sure you get me one of them double deckers.

I got one, too, and shared a Moon Pie with my father. It was the best thing I’ve tasted on this trip.