I love everything about Easter Eggs. The boiling, the dipping and dying. I love the smell of vinegar and damp newsprint left from the process. I love watching the various Easter Egg hunts that are broadcast on the television news shows. My most favorite Easter Egg hunts was not for the prizes found but the trouble and humor that came in its aftermath.
They do say it is your earliest memories that last the longest, so perhaps that is why this hunt is somewhat indelible in my mind. My Dad got the idea in his head we would have an Easter Egg hunt in our yard. Nothing new with that concept except he used real eggs. No plastic or marshmallow eggs for my Dad. He used the real thing and didn't count how many he hid. This was back in the day of the 'egg man' who would deliver our eggs in a huge basket. Dad just piled a bunch of eggs in a bowl and went off to do his deed.
Eggs were hidden all around the yard and the child that found the most won a prize. There was no 'golden egg' to be found. Just as many as your basket could hold. My family was a small clan of six kids so it was a lot of chaos and running and bumping each other to grab the found egg first! When we had exhausted all of our efforts and energy, the hunt was over. No, not over so fast....there's more to the story.
Fast forward a few weeks and everyone in our house is noticing a rotten smell somewhere in the house. We all were complaining and searching to find the source. It was a warm Spring so windows were wide open. Ahh ha! It was also letting in the foul air in from outside. It seems there were several eggs not found and they were rotting in the bushes under the windows. They were white and brown by the time we rooted them out. If they ever had been dyed there was nary a bright color remaining.
That was the first and last Easter Egg hunt I remember my Dad hosting. I think most of the other if not all the other Easter Egg hunts of my childhood were done in an 'off site' location. I can't help but smile every time I prepare for an Easter Egg hunt for my grandchildren. Most of all I remember to use plastic or marshmallow eggs. And I always include at least one golden egg...I prefer them to the rotten ones.