So, I just finished coordinating a candy exchange. Stupidly, being the coordinator, I didn’t think to take photographs of things as they came in, because I was too busy devouring my share and then hiding the rest so that I wouldn’t be tempted. It was definitely fun to coordinate this time, seeing what a bunch of people sent in and sorting it all out to different destinations. My closet was piled with labeled boxes. It was also really enjoyable lugging about 40 pounds of candy on the 108 and through downtown San Francisco to the post office, where I stood in line for an hour because I stupidly went during lunch hour.

Since most of the candy I received is only a distant memory in my stomach, I guess I’m going to be stuck with writing about the highlights.

From Texas, I received a bunch of individually labeled candy, including the Aztec God. This contributor sent in a lot of awesome regional stuff, and it was neat that she took the time to hand label everything with a little note.

From Florida, I got a bunch of individually packed bags of goodies, which included some amazing truffles from Soleil Chocolates. This particular candy superstar always sends in amazingly cool stuff. She also sent rock candy, which was really fun since I haven’t had rock candy in…forever. Although I do remember once, when I was a kid, I tried to make it. And it kind of melted to the woodstove, making the house smell like burned sugar for weeks. Anyway.

My New Zealand connection sent in a box of goodies including Marmite! Eeek! I still have a Cadbury Black Forest bar, which I am looking forward to trying since I love black forest ice cream. She must have spent a fortune buying and mailing all that candy. My goodness.

Agatha, in Olympia*, sent out a sweet box of old time goodies including super cool home made chocolate! She was smart enough to take pictures of her box when she got it, so you can get a sense of the awesomeness.

It was a small exchange, but a sweet one. (Hee hee.)

In Candyfreak, Steve Almond** talks about how regional candy producers are almost disappearing, and how difficult it is to get candy from small producers. I think this is a neat way to learn about the American (and global) candy landscape. In Agatha’s box, for example, there was an Idaho Spud, which will be familiar to Candyfreak readers. I haven’t eaten it yet, but I will. Oh, how I will. I love the opportunity that a candy exchange provides to discover and get addicted to new candies, which I then press on other people.

Like Aero bars! Mmm…Aero.

Did you know it comes in mint? Because I didn’t.

Anyway, if all this talk of candy exchanges is getting you jealous and you want in on the next one, you can email me: meloukhia at gmail dot com, or you can leave a note in the comments. I try to get one organised every few months or so, and the more participants, the merrier. It’s a pretty awesome deal: you buy a bunch of candy, send it out, and get a bunch back. International participants are encouraged, as long as you supply me with some sweet black market candy that I can resell on a street corner, looking shifty.

*Correction…er, thanks Agatha! I don’t know why I said Portland when I had an Olympia address right in front of me. I guess I just thought it would be cooler if you lived in Portland. Or something.

**Speaking of regional differences, “ahlmond” or “ammund”? You tell me, in the comments.

[candy exchange]