In many parts of the old south, taking a ‘spring tonic’ was as much a part of the changing season as the flowering dogwoods. It was the common belief that most folks could do with a good ‘spring cleaning’ after a sedentary winter eating canned vegetables and smoked meats. Each family member would have their dose to shed the sluggishness of winter.
I feel the need for an old-fashioned spring tonic. Something that would bring me out of the late winter doldrums. We have finished demolition at 815 17th Avenue, and everything is a mess. There are holes in ceilings, walls, and floors. There is sawdust everywhere and the front lawn is scarred and rutted. It is a little difficult to stay focused on the big changes right around the corner. By next week, the progress we are making will start to show, but just now things seem a bit gloomy.
I found this “Sabana Tonic” bottle during the demolition. It was made by the Jackson Brewery in New Orleans and is stamped 1928. It was made during prohibition when the brewery was only allowed to produce ‘medicinal’ beer. In 1934, the product was renamed “Sabana Beer” and it was produced until 1974. It is the same product,with different politics. Little wonder it worked to ‘strengthen the nerves.’ What a wonderful spring tonic. Maybe a spring glass of wine will do the same for me…