Have you ever wondered what your luggage looks like to the X-ray guy at the airport? If you want to guarantee a TSA inspection, just throw a bucket of maple syrup and some deer antlers in there and you’re sure to get someone’s attention.
I know what some of you are thinking, what the heck am I going to do with all that syrup! But seriously, I want to take a moment to explain myself and my weird packing habits. You see, when it comes to trips home I usually try to stock up on stuff I cannot find in Italy, but my husband always finds a way to insert logic and reason and I never quite succeed in stashing cheddar cheese or English muffins passed him.
This time however, I did get a few goodies in there and some of it even made its way to Genoa too. The most interesting item would be my deer antlers. You see, my brother is a hunter and so was my dad and my grandfather. It’s a family tradition and I see it as an important part of my Canadian heritage.
Now let me explain further because I know some people don’t like hunting and they think it is cruel. I am not terribly fond of it myself and I love animals, but that doesn’t mean that I am a vegetarian either. Over the many years growing up I have watched the men in my life hunt and gather. It’s something primal and simple but also takes a lot of skill and patience not to mention an immense appreciation for nature.
If I can eat beef from the supermarket how is that any different from eating deer that was hunted by my brother? In fact, the deer will be much healthier for me because it had a free lifestyle in nature and was not confined or fed antibiotics. The way I see it, the deer had a much better life – the way nature intended.
So, why did I bring home deer antlers from my brother? Because they symbolize something very important to me. My Canadian roots, the balance of nature, respect, patience, kindness, simplicity, skill, and most importantly, love. Every time I look at them I will think of the love I have for my older brother and the lessons he has taught me, his youngest sister.
PS. What about the turtles? They were for Zio Aldo…they’re chocolate covered pecans with caramel inside and shaped like a turtle. They are absolutely sinful and yummy! And ummm, no, my brother didn’t hunt them haha. But he does make some killer homemade Bailey’s, Hic!