Today, I struck gold.

No, no, unfortunately not real gold, but a type of gold that my papaw would be proud of. As many of you know my papaw went to his heavenly home last year, but before he left he taught me so many lessons that I will always remember.IMG_4567

Ever since I was able to walk, papaw always took me for strolls in his garden and would teach me how fruits and vegetables grow and how to tell which ones were ready to be eaten. Being the chubby kid I was, this was something I ALWAYS looked forward to.Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 11.12.40 PM

One time papaw took me out to his watermelon patch and taught me how to tell the difference from a ripe watermelon to one that was not at all ready to be cut into. He taught unlike many things that grow in the garden, you can’t judge the outside to determine whether or not the inside is ready. So I asked him how to pick the right one. He handed me a straw from a broom and told me to put it on the top of the watermelon and if it spun a certain way…it was ready. I quickly tried this on each of his watermelons any chance I could and never understood what he meant…after a few days practicing my technique I caught Papaw giggling, he informed me that he was “pulling my leg.” All that work I put into finding the perfect watermelon was not even accurate, but being the young, gullible child I was I fell for his prank. So after a few laughs at myself, he taught me the real way. IMG_4566

Apparently, all of those straws I stole from Mamaw’s broom was frivolous. All I needed was a good thump using my fingers and good listening skills (hollow=good) to find the best watermelon in the entire garden. And I definitely did find them. All of them.

Fast forward twenty years…(YIKES, I’m aging myself) to earlier this week I went to the store and decided I would add a watermelon to my fruit collection, so I used my thumping ability to find the perfect watermelon in the bunch. I must say it’s been awhile since I have picked out a watermelon so I was VERY nervous as I sliced my way into the summer treat. Luckily, to my surprise…IT WAS PERFECT. More than perfect, it was GOLD! IMG_4565

Today, I would say that Papaw is looking down at me and smiling ear to ear. He would be proud to see that I was not the crazy person with straw from a broom watching the air rotate the straw on a not so good watermelon.So for that…I am thankful that he taught me the silly way, so I would always remember the real way.




Love you Papaw!
❤ Justin

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