Thursday, January 28, 2010

Colder by the Lake

DIY Guy and I grew up in the same town in Northwest Indiana.
In the town of Hessville, the City of Hammond ... in the "Region" -- near the Indiana Harbor (or as we referred to it:  "The Harbor") -- which is near Gary, Indiana  (think Michael Jackson) -- and...near to the Steel Mills.

Both our dads worked at the Steel Mills -- or the "Mills" or "the Mill".  DIY Guy worked at the Mill too -- during the summers while in college.  He was a janitor.  Being a janitor in the Mill is, well, an experience.  The Steel Mills were the major employers in the Region. 

Jean Shepherd is from the Region too --
he wrote a story you might recognize - A Christmas Story.
Shepherd wrote other stories about growing up in the Region too.

There are many benefits of growing up in the Region -- one of those benefits are the amazing Mexican restaurants found there.  Real Mexican restaurants -- Like El Taco Real and Casa Blanca (some of our favs).   My dad would occasionally stop on a Friday after work and bring home bags of tacos from the Harbor on Friday nights.  They were always soft flour tacos.

Flour tortillas.  Yum.  Trouble is -- once you've had a homemade flour tortilla from the Region -- nothing else can compare from the stores.

Today I got a hanker'n for homemade tortillas.  Why I waited so long to make them, I have no idea.  So easy.  So good.

So versatile too.

The tortillas are yummy for dessert too, a little butter -- cinnamon -- sugar.

Fellow "Region Natives"  -- I think there are a few of you who read this -- share your your memories from the Region.  You sudden smell of the oil refineries in the air...then the temperature dropping about 15 degrees.  First the stink...then run for your jacket -- even in the middle of summer.

Someday we should take our kids to the Region --- to experience the Mexican food, the fragrant air, the beaches and dunes (they have been there).

I must go eat a tortilla now....


  1. ALWAYS sitting waiting for train to go by - that is, if you couldn't get around the gate before it roared past.......

    Cruising the "Boulevard" and circling through Blue Top - after you ate at House of Pizza.......

    We had great growing up years! I haven't been back in over 20 years - I've been told I wouldn't recognize the area I grew up in - and not in a good way...... :(

  2. Anonymous12:26 PM CST

    What, no recipe for the drolling masses??

  3. Oh yes.....the trains. More trains than anywhere else in the USofA.

    Boulevard cruising, Blue Top, House of Pizza --- I think I need to make a trip to the Region.

    I agree....the Region...for all it's negative was a great place to grow up...a culture all it's own.

    Maybe we should have a "Region Reunion"!!

  4. Anonymous....come out from hiding and maybe I'll give ya the recipe :)

  5. Anonymous1:13 PM CST

    Come to San Antonio for a visit with Cara...and you'll eat some real tortillas and Mexican food! :)

    P.S.- I'm sure yours are great as well!! :)

    Guess who!! :)

  6. Agree with Anonymous...where's the recipe?

  7. Anonymous12:25 PM CST

    Hahaha...don't tempt me!! :) Its JESSICA....but of course you knew that!! Or atleast you should have!! :P

  8. Oh Jessica...of course I knew it was you :)

    Recipe coming!


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