February is clam chowder month at our house-it's an anniversary tradition with a story. . .
John and I lived in Portland, Oregon for about a year while he was going to school-that was 30 years ago-day trips to the Oregon coast were a delight, my favorite kind of beach- cool, damp, windy, cliffs, driftwood. . .
So, one Saturday we headed for the coast with sweet Rachel in her striped overalls. John suggested we dig some clams and I heartily agreed, thinking about homemade chowder. We dug and dug; it was fun and productive, however. . . the game warden approached us, peeked into our clam sack and handed us a $40 citation. . . a citation for harvesting too many clams without a fishing license, imagine that? $40 for too many clams- not exactly milk money on a student budget.
But the warden let us keep those clams, so I took them home and made clam chowder for dinner that night. I imagine it was tastey, but the most memorable ingredient was the sand- for I was a novice at cleaning clams. . .$40 gritty clam chowder!
Isn't it curious-the memories we record and celebrate. . .and laugh about? So in February, around our anniversary, John and I eat clam chowder, remembering that year after year our God continues to be faithful even when we are foolish. . .
(and these days I use canned clams)