A real wild child

I’m laughing today because when I wrote my last post on Wednesday the sky was blue, the sun was out, and I was prancing around in a skirt without any tights on underneath.

Now, the temperature is barely hovering below zero degrees, the smallest of the snowflakes flying by my office window are about the size and circumference of a cornflake, and I’m pretty sure the sun has peaced out so hard I’m like to believe that Old Man Winter has locked it up somewhere in an off the grid bomb shelter, outfitted with enough rations to survive the both zombie and nuclear apocalypses (combined.)

We may never see it ever again.

Grim times in the Maritimes here folks (except not in the Maritimes, but you know, figure of speech et. al.)


To comfort myself, I bought the biggest apple fritter known to humankind this morning for breakfast.

I don’t know if this photo does it the correct amount of justice. This thing was pretty much the size of my face.

Boy was it ever awesome.

Although I’m not a huge breakfast gal in the first place, I have been making a concerted effort to 1.) eat it (period.) 2.) eat it before 11am and 3.) choose healthy options (which on a regular day works out to yogurt and granola and many, many cut-up apples and bananas).

Which I actually really, really love.

Only today that just wasn’t going to cut it.

Hence, the fritter.

I’ve always had a pretty big (okay, massively huge) sweet tooth from as far back as I can remember.

Growing up in an incredibly healthy household was both a blessing and a curse (in the parlance of Peter Parker). I love, love to munch on greens and organically grown gourds and grains, but I also crave dessert and deep fried goodies like the fiend of all fiends.

Picture this:

I remember eating my first Dairy Queen blizzard like it was yesterday.

It was the summer of 1994. I was nine. My mother and I were in Bellingham, Washington for the Bellingham Highland Games. We were staying at a small motel with the other dancers from my dance school and H’s mother decided to treat us to ice cream and asked us what we wanted for the DQ. Most of the girls requested dipped cones, but I was curious as to what the heck a “brazier” could be (because that was always advertised on their signage outside of the restaurants) and so that’s what I ordered.

One brazier please. Thank you very much Mrs. K!

Little did I know that a brazier is a small oven. Or, as Wikipedia puts is: A brazier is a container for fire, generally taking the form of an upright standing or hanging metal bowl or box.

(In hindsight, I’m pretty happy that Mrs. K didn’t come back with a small chiminea. I would have been a little sad to receive that in lieu of an ice cream.)

Anywho, because Mrs. K wasn’t crazy (like 9 year old me. Okay, because Mrs. K wasn’t crazy like me) she either figured out that I meant blizzard, or came to such a conclusion with the help of the fifteen year old kid working behind the counter (I’m pretty sure the mean age for all Dairy Queen employees sits around 16.3)

And boy did she ever deliver.

That small, mint M&M blizzard was pretty much the pinnacle of taste bud explosion up until that point in my pre-lemon meringue life. (The meringue explosion is a post for another day).

I thought I had died and gone to heaven.

My sense memory from that whole day is so strong, it sometimes surprises me.

The day is hot, but not so to make you uncomfortable- the breeze made it tolerable, running over the small hairs on our arms, giving us gooseflesh, and tucking the stray, errant strands from our falling-apart-buns, behind our ears, or flattening them against the length of our backs.

I am wearing a too-long tank top and loose fitting shorts. I am a gangle of arms and legs, too tall, and too skinny, and I try to fold myself up as neatly as possible to take up less room on the bed.

I am squashed next to H, who is my best dance friend. She has an amazing spray of freckles across the bridge of her nose and copper-kissed hair that shimmers like polished bronze when she dances in the sun.

When I sit with my legs tucked up to my ears, I imagine that I am a grasshopper lying wait in a field of wheat , but also strawberries.

I smell like a mix of hair spray and sunscreen; the backs of my knees itch from where my garters had sat, keeping my socks from falling down as I danced. My cheeks are flushed pink, and my lips stained red – from both the sun and my mother’s makeup – these rouges the only two pieces of makeup I will consent to, despite exasperated pleas from my teacher and coach.

We are five girls, giggly and wired; a day spent flinging and swording and reeling under the bright, blinding sun is what we chatter about, mulling over our missteps, medals, trophies and tears.

We’ll do it all again the next day when we head to Enumclaw, for their highland games – for their medals and trophies, their bagpipes and drums.

It’s the summer, so school seems light years away.

We are dancers, eating our ice cream – our mint chocolate, vanilla dipped, peanut parfaits, and our rag-tag card games, and ever evolving nick-names, our tartan, our seams, our slippers and lace; our dreams.

I like remembering that I am still that silly, but wild, singing, dancing, ice cream loving child.

Apple fritter anyone?

Published by

Vanessa Woznow

Writer, runner, ranter, reader. I write about all things.

4 thoughts on “A real wild child”

  1. Gah! I love the Bellingham Highland Games – best memories EVER! I was the 7 year old wandering around and totally envious of the amazing dancers – wishing I could be one. :) Yes, we are meant to be friends…

    Are you still looking for some yummy breakfast options? I used to have to force breakfast too but I’ve been doing this great protein shake that’s delicious and helps with the sweet tooth. Let me know!

  2. OMG it would be such a trip to know that we had crossed paths at such an early age. LOVE it :) Also, with our close proximity there’s no saying that we can’t have a meet up at the games in the present!

    YES, please send me the recipe. That would be lovely!

  3. Hey, we might as well! You think you’ll down for it this year? I’d seriously love to meet up – I have a feeling we’d chat for hours about travel, fashion, food, fitness…. It’d be awesome!

    I’ve been doing the Body By Vi 90 Day Challenge and using their ViSalus protein mix. Could send you some samples of it if you want. Just email me an address to send them to. :) I can send recipes too.

    1. I would actually LOVE to do that. It has been so many years since I’ve been down for the competition. And yes, I have no doubt in my mind that it would be a non-stop gab fest the minute we sat down (only to pause briefly because I would have, HAVE to go and eat a blizzard).

      Thank you so much for offering the samples/recipes!

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