First Taste

When I was a kid, my grandma used to take me to Rosie’s Ice Cream shop, Home of the Big Cone. The teenage server would fix me a cone so big, it would almost topple over as it passed from her hand to mine.

I‘d order a small, but it would still rise a half foot overtop the extruded grooves of the cake cone. It’s hypnotic swirl would rise in even waves, a ribbon of white alongside a ribbon of mint green, like Crest toothpaste.

It always melted as I licked it, in the rush to taste it as fast as I could. Rivulets of cold, sweet milk running down the sides of the cone, turning it soggy. It was just one of those things that I learned to enjoy quickly.

I would try to pause, somewhere mid-cone, and move the flavor around with my tongue before it went numb. But I could never slow down for long, knowing that the best part is the last bite — the cold, liquified cream filling the lattice of the cone end, insisting that you eat it in a single, blissful chomp.

I learned that it’s best to have a fistful of napkins ready, before she even hands over the cone. In the haze of sugar, under the summer sun, I’d wipe my face and my hands clean, smiling.

Like what you read? Give K.E. Kimball a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.