Hudson and I try to go at least one walk every day. Sometimes things are too hectic and we never get out there, but for the most part, we take a good three mile walk every day.
I love walking around our neighborhood and looking at all the houses, big and small. Checking out all the old trees. Looking at the houses that have clearly been occupied by the same owner for 60 years and those that have been updated and have recaptured their charm with cute fixtures and new paint.
Then I encounter the great smells like a fire in the fireplace or the smell of someone’s laundry coming out of the dryer vent. I love to walk close to supper time to get the smells of meat on the grill.
This is one of my favorite things in the world. It may be nosey, but I find so much comfort in knowing that everyone is going along with the routines of the day by doing laundry and cooking supper.
On the way home from choir practice tonight, I heard the song Sweet Southern Comfort, which is seriously overplayed even years later, but is so much fun to sing in the car. I just like calling out the Southern states.
My list of Southern comforts includes:
1. Hearing Louisiana Saturday Night on the radio.
2. An all-night conversation with some of my best friends.
3. A random phone call from my mother during the day followed by another random phone call just an hour later. Just because she felt like saying hello.
4. Arnold Palmers made with Firefly
5. A piece of snail mail written in familiar handwriting.
6. The way my boy lights up and squeals when his daddy walks in the door every evening.
7. The smell of chocolate chip cookies baking.
8. My bedroom being filled with the scent of laundry and dryer sheets (because our laundry “closet” is in our bedroom).
9. Finding Pretty Woman, Father of the Bride, or Steel Magnolias on TV.
10. A summertime thunderstorm at 3:00 in the afternoon.
11. Hearing someone say “sugah,” “dahling,” or “wawta (water)”.
12. Azaleas and dogwoods in bloom.
13. Bourbon pecan pie, beignets, and strawberry shortcake.
14. The sound of old hymns like The Solid Rock, Holy Holy Holy, It Is Well, and How Great Thou Art. I also cry when I hear my family members sing I’ll Fly Away. Might even cry just thinking about it.
15. The old, nostalgic feeling of being a child and pulling up to my grandparents’ house in Arkansas and getting excited about seeing all of my cousins.
16. Hearing my parents talk about their days as Southern youngsters and, through them, hearing about my grandparents’ days as Southern youngsters.
17. Seeing cotton off the interstate in Louisiana.
18. Seeing the pecan trees growing in front yards in Louisiana.
19. Looking for the “Crossett Light” with my dad and cousins.
20. Sitting in the living room at my Aunt and Uncle’s house, singing old hymns and giggling about the way my grandmother would always take the highest part when harmonizing.
Southerners, what are your southern comforts?
Non-southerners? What little things give you comfort and remind you of home?