Monday, August 30, 2010

Augustus Gloop Lives in Beaufort

So it's no surprise that I'm a chocolate lover. While it does not solve all of life's problems, it certainly helps them on occasion. AND it's healthy for you! Well, at the least the dark chocolate kind is. And at least that's what I tell myself when I indulge in it. Antioxidants right? They're those things we dont' know exactly what they do, but we know they're good for us and supposedly a few of them hang out in dark chocolate.

Well I attended a chocolate lover's heaven and diabetic's suicide of an event Friday night. My friend Kristin purchased tickets to the Chocolate Tree's "All You Can Eat Chocolate Night." Why have I lived in Beaufort for 20 years of my life and never attended this event?

I wasn't quite sure what to expect. Was it like a free-for-all where you go in and just paw over trays and trays of chocolate? (I seriously hoped not as I have a severe aversion to "community sample trays" - like the kind you find in Sams Club or the ladies at the mall who carry trays of shredded-up pretzel samples. I avoid them at all might as well label them as germ platters and have someone sneeze directly on them to get the party started.). Was it going to be a classy event with servers carrying around delicately dipped chocolates on paper doilies? (With a ticket cost of $10 I doubted this). Needless to say, I was curious.....

I was waiting for Kristin, who was a few minutes late, outside when the doors opened. I watched as people flooded into the hallway-like, cocoa-scented building, wondering how they would all fit inside. It was then I realized that the real-life characters of Veruca Salt, Arthur Slugworth and Augustus Gloop lived in Beaufort. Before all the "guests" were completely inside, I watched through the window (in an open-mouth shock) as people had made their way to the back within seconds...many with cheeks full and fists grasped around 2 or 3 toffee bricks or creme-filled chocolates, chewing as fast as they possibly could.

When Kristin got there, we went inside and watched the craziness for about ten minutes. I love chocolate but I don't think I qualify as a chocolate lover" anymore after seeing this. People were pounding one flavor-filled chocolate after the other. After about ten more minutes, we began to see people with TRAYS and PLATES...sagging in the middle, loaded way beyond their capacity and piled two or three morsels high. One guy even had a fanny pack with a holster for his squeegie bottle of milk! Gross!

We eventually found our composure and toured around the back rooms and did some sampling....(I preferred to stick to the case where plastic-gloved workers would hand you your requested sample...I know, I'm a germ snob). But after about an hour-and-a-half and four samples later, we were ready to go.

The event was definitely fun. It was cool to see the ginormous vats of spinning chocolate and the back rooms and conveyer belts where they make the famous candies and fun to take part in a very Beaufort tradition. But I will also be very wise in choosing my description of myself as a "chocolate-lover" in the future!

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