Monday, August 30, 2010
THE SCENT OF COTTON
Several days ago, my sister asked me if I had been to “smell the cotton” yet. Only someone who grew up as the daughter of a cotton farmer would understand this question. Cotton does indeed have a scent. Hard to describe but immediately recognizable to someone who spent hours in the “cotton patch” as a child. We took a drive to the cotton farms along the river this afternoon. Beginning with the bloom, here is one of the crops that was such a part of our childhood and one that helped make the South great.
Here is the cotton boll before beginning to open.
Here it’s just beginning to crack open revealing the cotton inside. When I was little, this is when we would begin to get the cotton pickin sacks, the cotton wagon and cotton scales ready! Not long before “cotton pickin” time would begin. (Oh, did I mention that when I was a little girl, cotton pickers had two legs and two hands instead of a motor?)
Here we are with just a tad more white cotton showing, not quite ready for pickin yet.
Here we go, ready for the pickers. Actually, the leaves will be dropped before picking begins. Some of the fields we saw had already been defoliated and were ready for the mechanical pickers. I think the open cotton boll is really pretty with the pinwheel in the center showing.
Ok, I admit, I had to pick a couple just for old times sake.
There you are lilsis, bring back memories? Remember potted meat sandwiches with Mama's fried chocolate pies for lunch in the cotton field? Playing in the cotton wagon when it was full of cotton and riding to the cotton gin with Daddy? That cotton scent brought back all those memories and more.
Thanks for reminding me to stop and “smell the cotton”.