Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

Story Time; Don’t Talk Back!

Memories: Don’t Talk Back: I was blessed by loving parents who I adored, but alas, as I became a teenager, I started “rebelling” only so lightly.  One morning, mom, dad, and I were working in the backyard, and mom asked me a question.  I back-talked her, and dad overheard what I said (I don’t even remember what I said now!).  He told me in no uncertain terms that my response was unacceptable.  He pointed to our lemon tree and said, “go hear of a “switch.” A switch I knew was a long piece of branch.

Some parents decide to make cutting a switch an additional form of punishment for a child by requiring the disobedient child to cut their switch; that was my dad, so he must have had some previous knowledge of the process; no, I never asked!

I returned with the switch, and he said: “bend over.” He whacked my butt with that switch, which stung, but that was not the real problem.  On the second wack, his watch, given to him by the company for twenty-five years of service, slid down his arm, over his hand, and proceeded to merrily go bouncing down the concrete walk directly into a block wall.  Big Oops!

Stuck in my mind to this day is mom saying, “I love you, son, now run for your life!!  Come back in an hour!”.  I shot out of that backyard like a rocket ship, even though I knew dad could not run.  There were scorch marks on the concrete where my tennis shoes dug in as I twisted and turned to avoid the cars parked in the driveway.

I returned about an hour later and checked in with mom; she said it was safe and that only the crystal on the watch had been damaged.  Another great lesson, I do NOT talk back to ANYONE!

Mom and dad were the greatest!

Circa 1945!

Mary, Colleen, and I were up by 6:30 AM, had our coffee, and checked in on Scout, The Wonder Dog.  Coffee is a must, and I love it when the coffee kicks in and I realize what an adorable badass I will be today.  Or, as Mary says, “All things are possible with coffee and mascara.”

So very true!

We made plans for today, which included meeting with the refrigerator repair man and the decorator, having a Persian lunch, and doing our toenails!

So, our new LG refrigerator has been making noise for a month, and finally, we got someone to look at the problem.  He listened and decided it was the back housing of the frig that had come too close to the condenser fan, so he moved the frig away from the wall, said some incantations, found a small hammer, and let fly.  The sound disappeared!  It was magic.  $90 for the visit and the “repair,” and we are back to a soundless frig!

Next, our decorator and a long-time friend came over with some samples.  I should have begun to worry when she showed up with a guide dog and a cane.

We are having the benches in the upstairs ballroom covered with hard foam seats so people can sit there comfortably.  She also brought sample materials for a “dust ruffle” under the bed.   Is it supposed to a) hide the dust or b) keep it from accumulating?  Something to ponder.

She also suggested changes to our living and dining room couches; we plan to go shopping while Colleen is here!

We decided to take Colleen for Persian food, and she was a little skeptical after our last suggestion of Indian food.  We went to Dayra in South Coast Plaza, where Colleen dined on a Chicken Shish Kebab  (Thick chunks of charbroiled chicken breast marinated in our special sauce with bell peppers, onions, and tomato.).

A classy joint!  Mary made me put away my toothpick and mentioned there was no spittoon!

I had the regular Shish Kebab (charbroiled juicy large chunks of filet mignon marinated, skewered with onions, tomatoes, and green peppers.)

Mary was the smart one and had Ash Reshteh (Persian soup: fresh vegetables, noodles, pinto beans, Kashk (whey) flavored with sautéed garlic and mint) with some Tabauli (Chopped parsley, onions, and tomato).

The kabob was excellent, especially the onions!  Is Shish kebab an English rendering of Turkish:? I?  (sword or skewer) and kebap (roasted meat dish), which dates from around the beginning of the 20th century.

We enjoyed our visit, and Colleen was no longer afraid of Persian food.  The three of us enjoyed each other’s company; a delightful lunch it was.  The people in the restaurant are Iranian and love our country, and we see several  “Free Iran” stickers everywhere.

A glass of vino to wash down lunch, and we were ready for toes!

It was 1:45 PM, and Mary made the call!  At 2:15 PM, we needed to be in Orange to get our pedicure; yes, Paul joined the ladies for the monthly pedicure!  We jumped in the Silver Fox, and away with us, we went.  As I always say, “If you’re in control, you’re not going fast enough.”

Chop, slice, dice, rub, tickle, wash, rinse… We now have beautiful toes!

We returned home and were getting ready for tonight’s dinner when Jan called and wanted us to meet her youngest son and family!  She wanted to show them how close we were, so we dropped everything and rushed over.

Jan with the family!  Looking good!

Jan wanted a picture of her support group!

Just us!

We only stayed a few minutes and then headed home to dinner, where fondue was on the menu!  Mary did the bread; I chopped up the cheese, and Colleen set the table; it was a family affair!

They calls me “The Slicer” (I grates also!)

Did You Know?  Fondue is a Swiss melted cheese dish served in a communal pot (caquelon or fondue pot) over a portable stove (réchaud) heated with a candle or spirit lamp and eaten by dipping bread into the cheese using long-stemmed forks.  It was promoted as a Swiss national dish by the Swiss Cheese Union (Schweizerische Käseunion) in the 1930s and was popularized in North America in the 1960s.

This was our first time, and it was fine!

We dunked bread plus apples and things from the garden.  The cauliflower was my favorite (because it held more cheese).

We all chowed down!

I fooled everyone, I had mine on already!

After these three “shorts,” we decided to go to the local community college and take classes in how to eat fondue!  CAUTION: The following is NOT recommended for the squeamish!

The belch and burps have been removed to protect the innocent!

The off-camera “plop” sound is cheese hitting the plate are 32 feet per second.  It sounded something like “whoomp!” Mary is so talented at this she made the cheese do a double reverse backflip as it smashed into the plate.

After dinner, we all crashed as Colleen had a hair appointment at 7:00 AM in Tustin, and we had a serious day of puttering around the house!

We got a text from Irene, who is in the Long Beach Hospital with a bladder infection.  As soon as she gets to a room, we will visit.

About Paul

Just an old retired guy trying to finish out my last years on this planet. I lost my best friend and wife in early 2020. I was blessed again by reconnecting with Dr. Mary Côté, a long-time friend. Mary and I got married July 28th, 2021, and are enjoying life together and plan to spend the rest of our lives being a blessing to our friends and family.
This entry was posted in Food and Wine, Friends, Memories. Bookmark the permalink.