Friday, October 28, 2011

The First Kiss



A girl dreams about her first kiss.  The moment hormones appear, she begins imagining that very special first kiss. 

I was no different.  Mainly I wondered about the mechanics of the kiss.  Am I supposed to hold my breath?  What if I sneeze?  Is the kiss straight on, or does one person have to angle the head slightly?  I mean, the nose can get in the way.  So many logistical questions, and I had no answer. 

So the day came: the day of my first kiss.

It was almost 45 years ago to this very day, October 28.  In 1967, I would soon be 15 years old, and as yet un-kissed. 

My brothers were going hunting, so our Uncle Leo drove from the city to our farm with his son, my cousin Preston.  They were going hunting, a manly thing that all the men in my family seemed to enjoy.

I had not seen Preston since the previous Christmas.  He was my age, younger by weeks.  Something had happened in those months since Christmas.  

 Preston was tall and had shoulders.   

He now shaved because he had obvious manly stubble.  When he smiled at me, his eyes twinkled in a way never noticed before.   

Handsome—that’s the word.  Preston was now handsome.

He had not seen me either.  Apparently I had also changed somewhat.  Things had settled in the right places and my face was that of a young lady.   

When I laughed or smiled, Preston glowed and beamed back at me. 

I watched as the men sauntered to the mud-splattered pick-ups, their shotguns in the worn cases tucked under their arms.  The way they carried the guns, so casual and confident, stirred something primal within me.

As they hoisted themselves up into the pick-up, Preston turned his head and smiled, just enough to let me know that he knew I was watching.  

 Sigh.  Be still my beating heart.

Soon they returned, a boisterous band of successful hunters.  They had gone into the wild, hunted for the good of the tribe, and returned with meat for the table.  

 The guttural roars of triumph and the jesting about missed shots brought us womenfolk outdoors to welcome the menfolk back from their foray into the forest.

I made a bee-line to Preston, breathless and eager.  Why, I didn’t know.  This was all new to me.  With pride, Preston held up his rucksack, declaring his skill as a provider.  “Come on over here, and I’ll show you.” 

We walked a few feet to the barn yard, by the stone wall.  Preston opened the rucksack, and pulled out one of his kills.  
This is not Preston, but a photo that captures the thrill of the moment.

It was a squirrel, a brown squirrel.   “One shot, I got him in one shot,” Preston told me as I gingerly touched the soft fur.  “Wanta help me skin ‘im?”  he said as he laid the dead squirrel on the stone wall.

Romance was in the air that day, let me tell you.

I did not cry or gasp in horror.  No, this was the farm, after all.  Although feminine, I was made of farm-tough stuff.

With his handy well-used hunting knife, I watched as Preston began the initial cuts.  It was clear to me that he was experienced, he knew what he was doing.

Then he leaned over and kissed me.  Just like that.  Kiss. 


We both giggled, and I believe I blushed. 

While we felt the glow of new kissing, Preston instructed me on how to separate the fur skin from the red muscles of the squirrel.  How to ease the pelt over the little squirrel paws without tearing the pelt. 


It was magic.  I don’t know how else to describe my first kiss, except to say I have never been kissed like that before or since.  

 Magic. 

 Many thanks to Arlee Bird for his leadership!

If you are curious about recipes for squirrel entrees, this appears to be a great site! Bon Appetit!

p.s.  My mother cooked up squirrel the next day for dinner. She soaked the meat in brine for 24 hours.  Rinsed it and par-boiled it in seasoned water.  Then dredged it in flour and seasonings.  She browned the meat in an iron skillet; covered the skillet, lowered the heat, and let it braise until tender.   Can't remember how it tasted.  I was still in a state of kissing euphoria.

9 comments:

  1. Lovely memory and story...eating squirrel...not so much.

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  2. Susan,I don't think I've ever eaten squirrel. I too, do remember my first kiss, though...... I was also 15. Nice remembrance on a sentimental day. :)
    Manzanita@Wannabuyaduck

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  3. A lovely memory. I have to join the others though and say I haven't eaten squirrel. And don't want to.

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  4. Wanta help me skin'im"; I wonder how many girls he got with that line.

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  5. Wow! That's some memory! Dead squirrels and sweet kisses.

    My first kiss was 2nd grade in the bushes with Tyson Johnson. My grandmother caught us kissing. It was very harmless, but a funny memory!

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  6. Oh, I loved this story! And, I join the club of getting my first kiss when I was 15 also. I'll never forget it! No squirrels though!! That part made me just a little squeamish!! Our squirrels are so cute, and I love to watch them playing in the trees and hanging practically upside down to eat from the bird feeder!

    Your post really took me back. As I read, I remembered the very spot where we were standing, and the quickening of my heart as I anticipated the contact!

    Thanks for your cheering comments on my post today!

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  7. Awww that first kiss! is there anything sweeter?! I love the picture of the squirrels kissing!
    very sweet post.
    Blessings, Joanne

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  8. Oh - that's gorgeous. I had a big smile all the way through that. I'm sad to say that I can't even remember my first kiss... I'm only 27.... it can't have been memorable! I do remember the first kiss that mattered to me though.
    Lx

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  9. I couldn't do that squirrel thing...but Preston sounds very cute! hehe

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!