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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The Fourth of July at the Moorings

     The 120 pound pig cooked slowly all night. After he (she?) was thoroughly injected with one set of seasonings, slathered with another set and topped with bacon for basting, he was completely double wrapped with foil. Then he was hoisted aboard two bags of charcoal to spend the night slowly roasting at 250 degrees. There is a perforated tube under the charcoal so that the air supply for combustion is provided by a thermostatically controlled fan. Come morning, Tom and Michelle Peralta pulled the meat apart and put it in wrapped foil pans to stay warm in the oven. You stock players out there might want to go long on aluminum foil. The sixteen racks of ribs went on first thing in the morning. Here's what three of them look like about three hours later.

     Next the ribs get treated to a dose of honey and brown sugar, double wrapped (more foil again) and returned for another hour or so.

     After the ribs were "nestled all snug in their beds", twenty pounds of coiled sausage went on. Meanwhile the campground staff and many volunteers were setting up tents and tables.

     Finally, when all the meat was done, It all had to be cut into serving size pieces. The pork was already pulled and the chicken was cut up, but the ribs, the sausage, and the brisket needed to be sliced. Again, more volunteers.

     The brisket takes a bit more finesse with the knives. First of all, there is a layer of surface fat to be sliced off. Then it must be thinly sliced cross grain.

     While the finishing touches were applied to the meats, an amazing plethora of side dishes magically appeared. [I'm told that there was nothing magical about it. Rather, it was the organization and effort of the distaff side that made it happen.]

     There were twenty tables set for six each, and there were only a couple of empty seats. Debra Donnahoo, the campground manager, welcomed everyone to a wonderful Moorings July 4th tradition. She thanked the several groups and individuals that made it happen. Appropriately, she also thanked the men and women, past and present, who have secured and maintained our independence. Then the tables were called, one at a time, to the serving line.
                                   Don't forget your vegetables!

     It seems like a festive occasion, and it is, but it is also a lot of work for a lot of people.

                                            Are we done yet?

          It's a trite cliché (a redundancy?) to say life is good, but this is one of those times that we are obliged to step back and take a moment to appreciate the good fortune and good friends that we have.
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