A rather unfortunate, toddler-bourne flu virus swept through our house over the weekend. I will spare you most the details, but I will tell you that, in the middle of a fevered night hallucination, I dreamt that Byron and I were on some kind of competitive cooking/travel show and absolutely had to find, clean, and perfectly prepare this special One True Sea Scallop before 3:00 A.M. and it was just so much work and when my bedside clock finally read 3:05 I nudged Byron and hoarsely whispered, We made it, babe, we really made it, to which he replied, Hrumpnnnnf-swaaa? and went back to sleep.
So last night, in the weary wake of said flu, I was really craving a big-ass shaved ice.
When I arrived at our local snow shack, a light drizzle was falling and there were no other customers, so I took my sweet time perusing the giant board of syrup options. The snow shack lady leaned out the window and asked, "Whatta ya in the mood for?"
To which I replied, "I don't know. I have a really sore throat, and this sounded good, but I need a syrup that won't burn my throat, I guess."
And thus began a thorough line of questioning between me and the solicitous snow shack lady as to my personal shaved ice preferences, history with shaved ice flavorings, and interest in their own special house combinations with names like "Ninja Turtle" and "Star Wars."
She was like my shaved ice sommelier (though she did fail to ask if I'd be enjoying my shaved ice with the sea bass or the lamb shank.)
So, finally, the shaved ice sensei smiles, reaches for a certain bottle, and asks, "Have you ever tried Apollo's Nectar?"
"Apollo's Nectar?" I repeat. My head, though addled, reeled from the inappropriate joke possibilities. "Um, no?"
"A lot of people really like Apollo's Nectar. A LOT. It's very popular."
"Yeeeeeah. OK, I'll have that."
And so I did. I don't know how to describe the flavor other than sweet. And red. It tasted very red. I gave her a nice tip.
And, though I'm sure this goes without saying, it took both a healthy dose of self-control and a deep respect for Snow Shack Lady and her craft to keep from calling gaily out the car window, just before speeding off, "THAT'S WHAT SHE SAID!" Times infinity.
(Postscript: What do they call shaved ice where you live? Halo halo? Raspas? Snowball? Syrupy Frozen Leavings Of Greek Deities? What do you put on yours? I love to hear about regional takes on the same food stuff, so do edumacate me.)