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Black-eyes and the New Year

Late this afternoon we dropped by Mike and Mel’s house where her family had gathered to exchange Christmas presents. It was the usual, happy family scene with food everywhere, men slouched on couches, women in the kitchen and kids pounding about everywhere.

“Had any black-eyed peas?” Mel asked as I sat at their bar.


“Well, the day cannot end without you two having some black-eyed peas.”  They had feasted on them the day before, and from the refrigerator now she pulled the leftovers, and into a plastic container she scooped some, snapped on the lid and handed it to me. An hour or so ago, I heated the peas, divided them into two small bowls, and Jerry and I ate the prescribed New Year’s Day black-eyed peas. I’ve heard of this before, of course, but it’s not a tradition our family has kept, and I’m not clear on the significance, although, I’m quick to say I didn’t need to understand why I was doing it to enjoy the little morsels this evening. They were delicious.

Guess I’ll Google the subject later, but for now any of you who want to school me, I’m open to hearing from you about the black-eyed peas and the New Year.  One more thing: Is there something about eating these peas under the table? Anything like that? I thought Mike said in passing that yesterday he snapped pictures of someone under the table eating peas. (Mel’s sweet family are likely to kill me when they read this, and I probably have that under the table part totally wrong. I’m asking forgiveness at this moment if I’m utterly confused. 🙂  )

Anyway, happy New Year. Be good people…and eat your peas! Not just sure why, but you must do this before you go to bed.