Yesterday I visited the public library to read the latest issue of NC's Our
State Magazine and do some research. Before going inside the library, while parking my car it sounded like something hit the roof.
Looking around on the pavement near my car I saw many little green prickly-like yucky things. They reminded me of a green starfish, minus one of it’s spiny points. Tires had flattened a few. Others were all brown and mushy, resembling some tiny creature from the Black Lagoon.
After I stopped wrinkling my nose I noticed something all nice and shiny. It looked like a nut so I picked it up and examined it. I wondered, “Hummm, could this be a buckeye?”
When I returned home I began a Google search and in 15 to 20 minutes I found my answer. I had solved the mystery in the library parking lot! That shiny object was a brown edible chestnut. Those green yucky prickly-like things were pods cradling the chestnuts forming inside. When the pods turn brown they hold mature chestnuts. The edible chestnut can have one or more flat sides and on one end the nut comes to a point.
I smiled. Sometimes I’m too busy to pay attention to life around me. If only I can remember to be more aware of my surroundings, I can learn something new each and every day. Now…if I can just find a folktale to combine with this lesson.
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Parking Lot Mystery
Sylvia Payne, a North Carolina Storyteller, comes from a diverse background of Scots Irish, English, and German ancestry. She grew up in the North Carolina foothills listening to family stories told by her mother. A graduate of High Point University and a former children’s librarian, her repertoire includes world folktales, stories of history, legends and family stories. With more than 30 years’ experience, her animated style, and her stories captivate and transport the listener into an imaginary world. In addition, she conducts workshops for parents, teachers, and college and university students. She serves on the North Carolina Storytelling Guild Board and is editor of the Guild’s bi-annual publication, Journal of Tar Heel Tellers. Sylvia has studied with such storytelling masters as Donald Davis, David Holt, Tim Lowry, Connie Regan-Blake and Donna Marie Todd.