Speaking of moonshine ...
Read Street Dave's timely, tasty comment about drinking moonshine got me thinking about the backyard brew I scored in college. I think it may have saved my life. Or almost killed me. I'm still not sure.
My freshman year, I went to the Sunshine Daydream Festival in Terra Alta, West Virginia.
Ever been up that way? It's good country. But I was totally unprepared. I brought one blanket and one change of clothes. It snowed.
I vividly remember huddling around a fire at 4:30 a.m. in the mountains as snow fell, afraid I might freeze if I fell asleep.
Someone was selling Mason jars full of fruit-flavored moonshine, and my buddy bought a whole bunch of it and passed it around. Each jar had little chunks of fruit floating near the top.
We could tell it was good stuff because even though it was freezing outside, none of the moonshine froze. That was probably the only good thing about it ...
You know how in those old Western movies, they call liquor "fire water?" After my first sip of Appalachian moonshine, I knew why. To this day, I think those jars of moonshine are the reason I have such a hairy chest.
Each jar had different fruit in it. I got one with strawberries and blueberries and another with peaches. It didn't really matter, though -- the liquor was so strong, it brass knuckled the fruit. I remember popping a blueberry in my mouth and biting down on it. It was like I'd swallowed a hand grenade.
Boom in my belly!
So how did this stuff save my life? It kept me feeling warm on a cold, cold night. I think this is actually incredibly bad for you, and can actually increase your chances of hypothermia. So I definitely don't recommend it.
But I will never forget my frigid weekend in the mountains, sipping moonshine and praying for the snow to stop.
(Sun photo by Lloyd Fox)