It was the summer of 1996 when I had my first run-in with beets.
I was at The Concord, a crumbling weekend getaway far past its prime, where my very extended family was having a reunion. My family unto itself, as described in the brisket post, is already the size of a NFL team roster including the injured guys, but this event included everyone descending from my great-great-grandparents’ oldest son, a few of his siblings, and their 15+ kids (and three generations thereafter).
I remember the hotel room that we used as family headquarters – the “hospitality suite” (confusing as a kid – no hospital there?), where the door was always open with snacks and drinks, and where the family tree someone put up for reference stretched around all 4 sides of the room. I remember days exploring the grounds of the resort* and relishing the independence my parents granted us to roam freely from the mini golf course to the pool. I remember shyly hiding behind my grandmother as I was introduced to a distant, older cousin who wore a Chicago Bulls’ championship ring and thus had the privilege of being the long weekend’s most famous person in attendance. Continue reading