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A Sweet, Tart Treat

Life giving you lemons isn’t always a bad thing.

Photographs Eugenia Uhl

As a kid growing up in the Pacific Northwest, the weather would mandate that my siblings and I wait until at least June to set up a lemonade stand on the lawn, but even then, the cul-de-sac we lived in didn’t draw much traffic. What I do remember most of all, though, is being eternally grateful for the few patrons (usually our parents’ friends and neighbors) who would stop by for this cold drink. It was usually on a mild, 70-degree day, and they were driving home from air-conditioned offices with filtered water coolers, but they at least humored us by pretending to be parched, as if they’d been wandering through the desert for miles. (Newsflash: There are no deserts near Seattle.) The customers who left us extra quarters were sure to be rewarded by the universe, we philosophized.

Here, though, no one has to wait till June to frequent a lemonade stand. March, and definitely April are seasonally appropriate for this refreshment. At Jazz Fest on a hot day, there’s nothing that compares to sipping a huge serving of lemonade at the Fair Grounds under the hot sun, replacing those electrolytes you lost while dancing.

To this day I am hardly capable of passing a lemonade stand without stopping – I figure that even if I’m hydrated and coming from an air-conditioned office, lemonade is always a welcome treat, and besides that, an extra quarter is a small price to pay for good karma.


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