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Mike Watson: Spring . . . and Wild Onion and the like
Memory of a day at Mr. Fred Pickerell's store, Gadberry, KY, and the mysterious odor Mr. Pickerell could not identify which he thought was spoilage in his produce department
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By Mike Watson
The coming of Spring brings to mind an old story. When I was a young sprout, likely the late 1960s or very early 1970s, there was an occasion when, along with either our Dad, Carl Watson, or uncle, Roy Bunch, or both, I was witness to a scene at Mr. Fred Pickerell's store, which was located at Gadberry.
It was a lazy spring day and several men were gathered at the store, including Mr. Monty Gadberry, Joe Gadberry, Paul Frankum and Carl Turner.
Mr. Fred was busy around the store while the others talked and joked.
After a time, Mr. Fred started moving boxes around, apparently searching for something.
Finally, when asked, his answer was he smelled something rotten and thought it was some spoiled goods. He continued his diligent search and the men continued their conversation.
The offending odor was not found before we took our leave, as I recall.
Dad or Uncle explained later that Mr. Turner had been quietly munching on wild onions, which were in his over-alls' pocket.
That was the smell that Mr. Fred could not locate.
Mr. Turner never said a word, but surely knew what was going on and kept it to himself.
To this day, when I see or smell wild onions, plentiful in early Spring, I think of the scene, and smile to myself. Mr. Fred did not catch on, at least not right away.
This story was posted on 2015-04-06 07:22:28
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