[From time to time, I will illustrate my story characters with: Richard Armitage as Sam Wakeforest, Marcia Gay Harden as Sam’s older sister Tessa Wakeforest Shoop Delaney, and Emily Deschanel as Tessa’s sister-in-law Olivia Delaney Wakeforest, Viola Davis as Pauletta Perkins, Cicely Tyson as Nellie Newton, Anna Sophia Robb as Alice Trent, Kevin Spacey as Roger Delaney, Sam Heughan as Todd Wakeforest, Idris Elba as Dominic Perkins, the late Polly Holliday as the Waitress Madge and others as noted.]
Authors Content Note: “Love in the Great Pine Woods” is a mature love story with dramatic themes of love and relationships. It will mostly be at the PG and PG-13 movie levels. Specific chapters or passages may have a further rating of: L for language, D for dramatic emotions, and S for sensual themes. And I will rate the chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide for a chapter, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer. And as is my habit, I will summarize the previous chapter’s events at the beginning of the next chapter.
Authors Recap from the Previous Chapter: Having celebrated their foster niece Alice Trent Delaney’s 15th birthday with a family indoor picnic on Saturday, April 16, 1956, Sam and Olivia avoided going to the afternoon sledding on the mountain. Olivia is still skittish about Wakeforest Mountain and the avalanche that they survived, but in which she sustained severely debilitating injuries to her left lower leg—with her still recuperating. Though their coming baby in September is a welcome distraction for her, Sam knows that his wife Olivia is still scared of Wakeforest Mountain. But with his understanding and infinite patience with her, Olivia makes a small step toward healing by suggesting that they visit the Wakeforest Family Tree Farm Lot at the base of the Mountain. Baby steps.
“Love in the Great Pine Woods”, Ch. 27 (PG-13): Cravings
Sam Wakeforest was glad that his wife Olivia could enjoy the family dinner for their foster niece Alice’s 15th birthday last weekend on Saturday, April 16, 1956—especially, the dinner part. Olivia now being in her fourth month of pregnancy means that she is past the morning sickness phase—when she felt too unwell to eat, or threw up soon thereafter. And as if to make up for lost meals, Olivia now tends to eat her meals with gusto—and in the strangest combinations of spicy, salty, sweet, and sour [(2) right] .
And Sam jokes that if he has a scrap of food on his plate that isn’t nailed down, that Olivia is likely to sample it—her phrasing for stealing his food, plain and simple in Sam’s mind. Sam is a most understanding husband—his wife Olivia is bearing their first child. He can hardly contain his delight, and pride in having sired an offspring so quickly. Sam may be 45 years old, but he is a man in his prime—handsome, athletic, rugged, and virile [(3) right] .
But not even nearly four months of wedded bliss can curtail all of Sam’s previous selfish stubbornness. In fact, some think Olivia Delaney Wakeforest is a saint—or certainly an angel sent to soften one of their town’s most prominent and wealthy citizens.
So it is the following Saturday, April 23rd that Sam will begin to notice Olivia’s food swiping becoming more brazen as they eat breakfast out at a local eatery called Hannah’s Diner. Looking over their menus while sipping their coffees, a hungry and eating for two Olivia seeks Sam’s meal input.
Olivia: “Sam, Dear?”
Sam: “Hmmm?” Sam replies off handedly without look up at her.
Olivia: “Do you think I could have both French toast and pancakes?” Olivia smiles sheepishly [(4) right] . Prior to becoming pregnant, she would never eat so much. But more and more, she has cravings for certain foods—and she is not happy until she eats them. Sweets mostly, but the odd sour or spicy food also enters her mealtime—and snack time—menu.
Sam: Sam’s eyes wide. “I don’t see why not. Live a little.” He smiles up at her over the top of his breakfast menu.
Olivia: “With chocolate syrup? And pickles?”
Sam grimaces as he looks up at Oliva, him finding the thought of chocolate syrup on pancakes distasteful—and pickles downright obscene. Sam is not a pickle man.
Sam: Blanching, he replies evenly. “Whatever you want, Darling.” Sam is grateful that his wife does not require him to eat her food combinations. At least in that he is spared, he thinks a tad melodramatically.
Just then the waitress Madge [(5) right] comes back to take their orders. She is a woman of a certain age—past fifty, maybe even past sixty. Waitressing has been her life. And she does it well. Her waitressing uniform and its accessories of a pinned hankie underneath her name badge and such that she adds to it are just like her personality, bold and brassy. Even her hair piled and poofed high on her head is a brassy shade of fading strawberry red. She is the queen of waitresses—in her own mind. But of course, she has never had a customer before like Sam Wakeforest.
Waitress Madge: “I’m Madge. What will it be, folks?” She smiles affably. She knows that she gets more tips if she appears cheerful. But slinging hash for 10 hours a day for a living is not an easy line of work. But it is early morning, so she is fresh with energy so far.
Olivia: “Oh hi! I would like one pancake and one slice of French toast–and two eggs scrambled and two bacon slices, please.”
Waitress Madge: “Is that all, Hon?” Madge asks while popping the chewing gum in her mouth.
The waitress notices Olivia’s expanding belly with her still larger and roomy maternity top on. Olivia has started wearing the fuller tops for comfort–and because she is proud to show off her baby bump.
Olivia: “I would also like maple syrup and chocolate syrup on the side. And some pickle relish—also on the side, please.” Olivia thinks that pickle relish being scooped onto her plate seems more lady like than her having a pickle that could be eaten with one’s fingers. “And may I have each food item on its own plate, please. I don’t like my foods to touch.” Olivia smiles sweetly.
Sam rolls his eyes. At least with them eating out, he doesn’t have extra dishes to wash up, like they do at home when Olivia indulges her multiple plate preferences at home.
Waitress Madge: “Uh huh!” Then the waitress looks over her shoulder and yells to bud the short order cook standing behind the pass through window at the grill behind the counter. “Knocked up special!” Then Madge turns back to Sam. “And you, Sir?”
Sam: Sam is livid. “I’ll thank you not to catterwall your misguided assumptions about my wife’s meal choices to the cook—and every diner patron here. She is not knocked up!” Sam sputters with righteous indignation.
Olivia: “Oh Sam! She was kidding. ” Olivia sighs with an impish grin, then giggles. “Ha ha ha ha ha!”
Sam: “Olivia, it’s not funny! You are bearing our first child. And she is casting aspersions upon your character.” Sam fumes with his arms now crossed.
Olivia: “Sam? You know for a second there, you seemed to be channeling my brother Roger. Are you sure that you’re alright?”
Olivia looks at her Sam husband in mock concern. Olivia is the one experiencing all of the pregnancy side effects, but her husband Sam seems to be just as on edge. Olivia knows that Sam can be a bit prickly at times—like the formerly long standing self centered bachelor he had been before they married—especially when he is hungry as he is now. But Olivia merely thinks of Sam as being her prickly pear—and she loves pears—and besides, Sam is very nice as a husband, she thinks blushingly.
Waitress Madge: “Sorry, Sir.” Madge tosses off non-apologetically—her brassy red hair is some indication of the waitress’ temperament. “Your order? Sir!”
Olivia: “Please give her your order, Sam. I’m hungry.” Now Olivia pouts. She feels ravenous! It has been at least since her midnight snack of salted popcorn and ice cream, that she has had any food—and that was over eight hours ago.
Sam: “For pickles and chocolate syrup?”
Olivia sheepishly shrugs her shoulders.
Waitress Madge: “Sir?” She taps her pencil tip on her order pad several times.
Sam: “Alright!” He snaps in his rugged mountain man way. “I’ll have two waffles with maple syrup, and three sausage links with two scrambled eggs and hash browns.” It is a big meal for a big strong man—who believes that his wife will swipe part of his food.
Waitress Madge: “Three sausage links? The Swedish Sunrise Breakfast only comes with two. We’ll have to charge extra for the third sausage link.”
Waitress Madge: “Dandy!”
Olivia: “Why do they call it a Swedish Sunrise Breakfast?”
Waitress Madge: “Because it was Carl Jorgensen’s favorite meal.”
Sam: “Who is he?”
Waitress Madge: Pointing to the meal description in Sam’s menu with her pencil eraser, she replies blasely. “Owner.”
Olivia: “But I thought Hannah was the owner? Hannah’s Diner.” Olivia points to the menu cover’s bold red lettering.
Waitress Madge: “Owner’s wife.” She rolls her eyes.
Sam: “Well? Aren’t you going to place my breakfast order?”
Their Waitress looks at Sam with a blasely raised eyebrow. Then she looks over her shoulder again at the Cook.
Waitress Madge: “Grandpa’s Breakfast, with an extra wiener.”
Sam: “Wiener? I’m not having a hot dog, I’m having sausage links.” Both food items are made similarly, but sausage links sounds so much better than wiener.
Waitress Madge: Looking back over her shoulder, the waitress clarifies for the cook. “Little wieners.”
Sam tilts his head and glares at the waitress—who seems to be oblivious to his ire. And the waitress is not worried about not getting a good tip from the Wakeforest’s table as she tends to other customers. When the wife is along, they always make sure the waitresses receive a fair tip.
After receiving their breakfast food and beginning to eat it, Olivia does, indeed, make use of her various and unusual condiments. First, she takes some pickle relish and sprinkles it over her scrambled eggs—before mashing them all together. Then, Olivia takes the maple syrup bottle in one hand and the chocolate syrup bottle in the other hand and pours them onto French toast and her pan cakes [(6) right] in rather artistically abstract crosshatch patterns. Sam watches her transfixed.
Sam: “You’re really going to eat that?” He asks before taking a bite of his sausage link. Then he cuts up his waffles in preparation for the maple syrup.
Olivia: “Yes! Want some?” She holds out the syrup bottles.”
Sam: “Thanks! I’ll just take the maple syrup.” Sam pulls the maple syrup bottle out of her hands and pours it on his waffles in a big dollop. The syrup is thick and getting slower to come out. So he has to shake the bottle a bit to get the last bit out of it. And unfortunately, his 100 pounds of grip strength squeezing makes the plastic maple syrup bottle’s top pop off–and plop into his coffee cup. “Damn!” He whines.
Olivia: “Ixnay on the erring sway.” Olivia wags her finger at him minxishly, then points to a family with children seated two tables away. Then she returns to hoovering her food.
Sam: Raising his hand to get his waitress’ attention, he calls out. “Miss? I need another coffee cup.”
The waitress nods her head, but finishes taking the order of the other table of diner patrons. Then after she places that order, she walks back to Sam and Olivia’s table with a coffee cup—but without a saucer, and no coffee.
Waitress Madge: “Here you go, Sir.”
Sam: “But I wanted more coffee.” Sam whines at the waitress, while Olivia samples his maple syrup laden waffle chunks. Food Theif, thinks Sam.
Waitress Madge: “That’s not what you asked for.” She looks at him challengingly.
Sam: “Maybe not. But you knew what I meant. The syrup bottle top dropped into my coffee.” Sam lifts up his coffee cup with the maple syrup top swimming in coffee.
Leaning over and looking at the maple syrup top bobbing up and down in Sam’s coffee, the waitress nods her head.
Waitress Madge: “Oh! So it has. I’ll get you some more coffee, Sir”
Sam: “Thank you!”
As Sam returns to his breakfast meal, he looks down to find a suspiciously half filled plate as an innocent looking Olivia stuffs a morsel of waffle into her mouth. Then he looks up at his wife.
Olivia: Swallowing, she asks quizzically. “What?”
Sam: “You’re quite hungry today.” He looks forlornly at his plate again.
Olivia: “Uh huh. And on the way home, we should stop off at the market to pick up a few things.”
Sam: “Let me guess—chocolate syrup, pickle relish, and …?” He tilts his head prompting her to fill in the blank.
Olivia: Stabbing one of his two remaining sausage links with her fork, Olivia adds. “And ice cream and sour kraut.” She smiles sweetly as she nibbles on the sausage link.
Sam: “Disgusting!” Sam mutters under his breath. “Olivia Darling, are you sure you’ll be up for a trip to the market after eating all of this? Won’t your digestion kick in?” Meaning her need to go to the bathroom.
Olivia: “Yes, but, then we can go home to rest …” She lifts her eyes seductively to her husband. “… and nap.”
Sam: His ears perk up. “Really?” He asks hopefully. She nods. “A nap, or a nap?” He says the two words differently to convey their different meanings.
Olivia: “The first one, a nap!” Olivia smiles brightly.
Sam: “Oh! Yes, a nap would be lovely! Eat up. The faster we get done here and at the market, the fast we can go home and … nap!” Sam relishes—no pun intended—his and Olivia’s romantic moments. They have been few and far between the last few months. And Sam hopes that their long dry spell—but for a blip here and there—is at an end.
And even though, Sam has not gotten to eat a full nutritious breakfast today—because Olivia also sampled Sam’s hashbrowns–he feels that he will still have enough energy to nap. He will eat a ham sandwich after. Sam has gotten good at eating on the fly–and learning not to leave his food unattended around Olivia, he thinks wryly.
Sam smiles contentedly at his wife Olivia. Wed only not quite four months, they are still technically on their honeymoon. And to Sam, the next best thing to a full meal—maybe even better than a full meal—is a nap with his wife.
To be continued with Chapter 28
References for Ch. 27 by Gratiana Lovelace, March 17, 2016 (Post #887)
1) The “Love in the Great Pine Woods” story cover is a composite of two images manipped by Grati:
a) the Richard Armitage portrait is from the 2011 Project Magazine photo shoot and article interview, that was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Richard/Promos/ProjectMagJuly2011/album/slides/ProjectMag-05.html;
b) the snowy Pine forest vertical image was found on Pinterest at https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/62/fa/ff/62faff1253d55f571eb3659cc7661e73.jpg
2) The jar of pickles image was found with the article “Baby wants a pickle! The 10 most common pregnancy cravings and why we have them” that was found at http://pregnancy.familyeducation.com/pregnancy-nutrition/healthy-pregnancy-diet/taking-care-of-yourself/73467.html?page=1
3) The Richard Armitage portrait from the 2011 Project Magazine photo shoot (photos by Matt Holyoak) and article http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Richard/Promos/ProjectMagJuly2011/album/MattHolyoak-27.jpg
4) Olivia smiling is Emily Deschanel as Bones (bls to blue) found at http://images4.fanpop.com/image/photos/14600000/Emily-deschanel-bones-14691540-266-400.jpg
5) Waitress Madge image is Polly Holliday as Flo in the Alice tv show found at http://i36.tinypic.com/2vx0h2d.jpg
6) Image of chocolate syrup on pancakes was found at http://www.southbanklondon.com/images/3865074412_42eb01bb7e_531499bab24db.jpg
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