Happy Friday, mi Gente!

In many parts of the world, it is “holy day” season … you know, families and friends getting together to hopefully appreciate each other … and the planet Earth!  We humans definitely eat a lot of food over these “holy days”.  I have kind of converted the “time of year” as simply a time to “give thanks”!

I grew up in one of those typical American households where the parents get “sucked in to” the commercial “pinnings” if you will, that capitalism has also “captured”.  Now, while all of the cards and trinkets and gifts are gestures of kindness, those same things are like “lures” to us humans to keep feeding the “capitalist machinery”.  Don’t get me wrong now, I am retired and living off of monthly checks.  So, THIS aspect of “capitalism” I appreciate …

Last night, after much thought, I took myself out for a nice meal.  Normally, I would be with family and/or friends.  But this time, I wanted to try to see what it would be like to go out to eat alone on a day like this!  Needless to say, all around me were tables filled with folks chatting about “Thanksgiving” while others spoke in their native languages be it German or Italian since many tourists come from Western Europe.  I “no longer” imagine “Pilgrims and Indians” eating a Thanksgiving Dinner together.  I have read enough and studied enough of “American History” to determine that there was “no love” between the two totally different cultures … Peace be still!

These past few days, I have been thinking about my Dad, “Big Ike”, and how he and my mother, “Mary”, often worked magic to make our household in the Winbrook Projects in White Plains, NY our “home sweet home”.  I have learned how to be humble and still have a great time.  It’s not genius but it’s due to “necessity”.  Ain’t no silver spoon or any type of “privilege” that I can count on except being a “good person” … the best that I can be.  So, I thought about all that stuff as I consumed my first part of a three-course dinner … alone.  It was called a “Mediterranean stack” … pure veggies including eggplant and some other stuff!!  My entree was blackened Mahi Mahi with shrimp sauce and more lovely steamed veggies including asparagus and smashed potatoes.  I was feeling it.  I am not a drinker so I had a glass of water, which I finally finished after my chocolate cheesecake with blackberry sauce smeared heavily on top!  My table was for one, and it was close to the road.  I watched the wet street as it has been very rainy lately … including this very moment!  It’s the “rainforest”, Baby.

An interesting new friend I have met recently was walking by as I ate.  I said hello to her and she noticed I was alone.  She said, “Hi beautiful!”  Then she walked between the heavily populated tables to reach mine and stooped down to plant a kiss on my cheek.  Upon realizing that I was alone and there were no other chairs, she replied, “I’m going home!” and we planted another kiss on each other’s cheeks.  I finished my meal, got up amongst the multitude after paying my bill, took my leftover blackened Mahi Mahi and stepped into the rainy street and headed home.

All I could say was, “Thank You” … you dig?!?


John I. Cook, Director

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