I get home tonight to find a box waiting for me. I recognized the name of the sender, but I had no idea what might be in it.
As I started to open it, I could smell what was inside.
You read that right.
As I opened the box a bit more, I saw them.
I started to roar with laughter, leading my 14-year-old to walk over and look inside the box.
“Uh, dad. It’s a bag of limes.”
And I began to laugh harder.
Before you think I’ve gone off the deep end, here’s the story behind why the gift was such a hit.
The day before the Grey Cup, my older son and I got together with two other Canadian Football League fans, who also happen to be from the U.S., and their wives. We spent part of the morning at the annual CFL Fans Fight Cancer event before heading over to a nearby restaurant.
The two men and one of the women are graduates of Auburn University. My older son is a huge Auburn fan. I’m an Alabama fan.
Guess which college football game the four guys begin watching in that Ottawa restaurant? (Their wives joined us toward the end of the game.)
As the game unfolds, so does the good-natured back and forth between them and me. Whenever an Auburn player would make a play for his team, Paul Brindley — he’s the bearded man in the middle of the picture you see above — would prompt the bartender to stick another slice of lemon or lime into my glass of water.
Whenever an Alabama player made a good play for his team, it was my turn to grab the bartender’s attention and get a slice of lemon or lime added to Paul’s drink.
The game ends up in Auburn’s favor. While I wasn’t paying attention, Paul already had arranged with the bartender to have roughly six slices of lemons or limes added to my water. As soon as the clock struck 0:00, my “prize” was delivered.
There were now enough slices that I couldn’t get my lips around any part of the glass without touching a lemon or a lime.
Soon after, we snap a few more pictures, share a few more laughs and head out the door.
Tonight, I was reminded of that fun day with the Montgomerys and the Brindleys. And for some reason I keep thinking I can taste lemons and limes.