In Cucumber Glory

About 3 weeks ago, Sugar and I were invited to a picnic lunch with a group of FriendsNotFriends. One we had met once and had actual conversation, one we had met on a tour, and the rest were social media friends and their friends. 

All these folks were in a social media history group. One of these people is a published author. The picnic was to be held at the author’s place on a barrier island. 

Y’all already know that Sugar considered not going before he considered going. Being a recluse involves a lot of planning and worry, especially if there are people involved because the situation might get too people-y. Plus there was that Meeting A Famous Author thing. 

I think the last time I was at a picnic was when I was a child, otherwise known as A Very Long Time Ago. We weren’t sure how this modern-day picnic would play out. 

Would it be outside?

Or on a screened porch? 

Will it involve sitting on the ground? 

Do we take our own drinks? Utensils?

Do we take food just for us or for everyone?

Clearly, our picnicking social skills are lacking.

Sugar thought we should take cucumber sandwiches. Do you know how hard it is to find good cucumbers in season in early May?


We found some small pickling cucumbers that were prepacked. They appeared to be from Mexico, and why wouldn’t they be?

Through careful planning and another desperate circling of one of the only two grocery stores in our little town, Sugar chose a loaf of some kind of wheat bread that wasn’t super wheaty. I offered another kind of bread that was sprinkled with seeds and toppings, but he said no. That was not how his mother would have done it. 

Now, Sugar and his mother had a strained relationship like many, many of us. Sometimes, the strain comes from generations of issues, and sometimes it is created in just our own life. It’s a complicated thing. 

Sometimes we make cucumber sandwiches. 

Sugar said we had to cut the crusts off of the bread before we make the sandwiches, because that is how his mother did it. And we had to spread the mayonnaise on two slices of bread, layer the cucumbers on the first slice, lightly sprinkle some salt, and place the top slice of bread, then cut on a diagonal. I told him he wasn’t supposed to eat salt and these sandwiches might kill him. He said that was okay. 

We made ten sandwiches which turned into twenty when we cut them on the diagonal. They fit perfectly into those plastic Gladware containers. 

And off we rode in Ole Yeller with our sandwiches, some donuts from the bakery, and a jug of sweet tea. 

We had an address that I plugged into the map app on the iPhone. Lots of times the GPS is off, but this time it was perfect. Everyone else had gathered in the living room of the cottage, and we offered our cucumber sandwiches on the table which was covered with all manner of good things, like pimiento cheese, and chicken, and pasta salad, and hoecakes, and meatballs. I’m probably forgetting something. 

Then the hostess spotted our cucumber sandwiches. She stood by the table and took a bite of one. She held it aloft and said, “Who brought these?”

Sugar spoke up and claimed our ownership. That’s right, the famous recluse engaged in conversation with someone he hadn’t known 15 minutes before. 

After lunch, we all walked down to the water, which meant walking across some fields by some ponds to Alligator Creek. There is a dock, but no alligators, and a little summerhouse with a screened porch. 

We sat on the dock, and posed for a photo. It’s not every day that you can bask in cucumber glory. 

Afterwards we took a tour of the garden, and Sugar scored some bunching onions. 

As we said our goodbyes, Sugar offered the remaining cucumber sandwiches to our hostess. She accepted every last one. 

When we drove off, our new friends waved goodbye, and our hostess waved while enjoying a cucumber sandwich. 

And that? Is a Very Good Day. 



7 Responses to “In Cucumber Glory”

  1. Judith Richards Shubert Says:

    Love your picnic! You have such a great way of telling a story. I can just taste those cucumber sandwiches!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Katrina smith-young Says:

    I enjoyed this story. And I have never had a cucumber sandwich before. How did you meet your husband?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Emily Says:

    Wonderful day for you two and great Southern story!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Audrey Bateson Says:

    Hi Ruth & “Sugar”, good story!  I love your writing; you should write your own book!  ❤ As Always, Audrey

    Liked by 1 person

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