Returning to the Past - Long
Well, I am pretty bored at work today, being the only poor soul around on Labor Day (doing my part for our continuous manufacturing coverage). Anyway, I thought I would share a little anecdote about some pipe tobacco I picked up over the weekend.
More than 15 years ago, I took up pipe smoking as a lad in high school. My childhood, honestly, wasn't that great, and I had lots of family problems to deal with. I spent a fair amount of time in my room with the door closed, listening to music or reading, and trying to forget about what was going on outside the door. I dreamt a lot about what life would be like as an adult, with lots of money, a nice house, kids, cats, wife, etc. I always pictured myself at home, smoking a pipe, enjoying some fine spirits, etc., so I figured why not pick up a pipe and start now?
Anyway, I found a cheap briar pipe at CVS and some Captain Black tobacco or somesuch, and tried it. I immediately liked it, especially the "old world" sense of the pipe, but the weird chemical taste of the Captain wasn't much to my liking. At that time, I was working in a lumber yard, and my boss smoked a pipe while driving the forklift around. This is before all the laws that prevent you from smoking anywhere. Anyway, we got to talking about pipes, and it was clear he knew the good stuff. He advised me to head to De la Concha Tobacconist in NYC, pick up a good briar, and try some tobacco they blended called "Don Pepe".
My father worked in NYC, as he still does to this day, and I told him I wanted to head in with him and check out this shop. My parents were actually cool about me smoking a pipe in my room, believe it or not. I was a good kid compared to my siblings, and I think they viewed it as a somewhat harmless vice compared to what I could have gotten myself into.
Anyway, I went to De la Concha, and got my first quality pipe - a "Bing's Favorite" by Savinelli, and the aforementioned Don Pepe. I have the pipe to this day, and it still smokes great. It is a long stemmed, classy, small-bowled briar. The tobacco was a revelation - smooth as silk, with a light casing that reminded me of marshmallows early on, and of nuts later in the bowl. I spent many nights smoking in my room and waiting until I could go to college and leave the house I grew up in.
Fast forward 15 years. Most of what I dreamed about in my room, smoking, I now have. A new house, wife, kids, a life where I don't have to worry too much about spending money, etc. I have a largish collection of pipes that I still smoke occasionally. However, I haven't touched a flavored tobacco in 15 years. I love traditional English mixtures, Virginias, etc., but no flavorings. Same story in liquors - I don't have much of a sweet tooth, prefering good dry whiskys, bourbons, and the like.
I am blessed to live fairly close to NYC, and my family loves to head there when we can. This weekend, we dropped the kids off with my in-laws, and we headed in for a show. Having some time to spare, we started walking around a bit, and we came upon.... you guessed it... De la Concha Tobacconists. I couldn't resist checking it out again. It had grown in size quite a bit, but they still had the same tobacco blends that were there years and years ago. There in the pipe tobacco section was the Don Pepe. I actually debated for a bit before purchasing it. What if it wasn't as good as I remembered? Would it sully the memory of those awkward, pensive childhood moments that lived in my memories? After all, I don't smoke anything sweet anymore. After some consideration, I purchased a few ounces.
That night, after the kids were in bed, I grabbed my Savinelli pipe (the same one I had bought 15 years ago), loaded up, and headed to the porch for a smoke. Those first few puffs brought tears to my eyes and old memories welling up. It was just as I remembered it - sweet, nutty, and fragrant. I sat there a while, smoking and remembering. Here I was, pretty much just where I had hoped and prayed I would be, looking back. It was a really special moment.
Anyone else have some "returning to the past" memories to share?
Very nice. What I was smoking in a pipe also came in ounces , my parents were NOT cool about it , and it also was available at only select locations.
Very strange you brought this up..................Last night my son stayed over and since he is still young I usually let him sleep with me. I was unable to sleep last night, partially because I was continually kicked in the groin but mainly because It was pitch black in my room from the new curtains I put up and strangely silent. When I was a kid I always wanted a fort in the backyard.....after some convincing and alot of planning and money saving my dad and I along with my uncle built the best damn fort a little boy could imagine. We went out and found used telephone poles and cut them in half, cemented them in the ground and built a deck on top of them. There was a trap door in the floor with a rope lader and a roof and the whole nine yards. For what ever reason when I was young I always dreamed about having a family. I used to camp out in this fort at night and enjoy the total silence and look at the stars(something you cant do in houston) and think of what it would be like to have a family. I thought about all of this at 4am today and it made me sad..........Here I am with everything I never thought about (good job, healthy, financial security, about to buy a new house) and the one thing I always wanted has recently been torn apart...My family. I do thank god every day though for my beautifull son, he is a blessing and I hope when he is older he understands the value of what it is to have a healthy family and value marriage and togetherness and not easily give up and bale out when times get tuff.
Which also reminds me scotto...............You said you were going to get off early and hit the liquor store.............Dont let me down....Dont work to hard either.
The $%$& liquor store was closed!! Guess I'll have to stick with what I have in the house tonite.
Thanks for sharing your story, Sean.
Scotto, sincerely a very nice childhood tale.
Sean, hang in there buddy. Your son will remember what memories you create for the both of you.
Son of a..............That stinks
Originally Posted by Scotto
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