Paul Bunyan's Kitchen
Oregon, Tall Tales
S. E. Schlosser
One winter, Paul Bunyan came to log along the Little Gimlet in Oregon. Ask any old timer who was logging that winter, and they'll tell you I ain't lying when I say his kitchen covered about ten miles of territory.
That stove, now, she were a grand one. An acre long, taller than a scrub pine, and when she was warm, she melted the snow for about twenty miles around. The men logging in the vicinity never had to put on their jackets 'til about noon on a day when Paul Bunyan wanted flapjacks.
It was quite a site to see, that cook of Paul Bunyan's making flapjacks. Cookie would send four of the boys up with a side of hog tied to each of their snowshoes, and they'd skate around up there keeping the griddle greased while Cookie and seven other men flipped flapjacks for Paul Bunyan. Took them about an hour to make enough flapjacks to fill him up. The rest of us had to wait our turn.
The table we had set up for the camp was about ten miles long. We rigged elevators to the table to bring the vittles to each end, and some of the younger lads in the camp rode bicycles down the path at the center, carrying cakes and such wherever they were called for.
We had one mishap that winter. Babe the Blue Ox accidentally knocked a bag of dried peas off the countertop when he swished his tail. Well, them peas flew so far and so fast out of the kitchen that they knocked over a dozen loggers coming home for lunch, clipped the tops off of several pine trees, and landed in the hot spring. We had pea soup to eat for the rest of the season, which was okay by me, but them boys whose Mama's insisted they bath more than once a year were pretty sore at losing their swimming hole.
Follow S.E. Schlosser's travels through Oregon as she researches ghost stories for Spooky Oregon, book 15 of the Spooky Series.