Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Say it aint so!

I believe my first visit to Charlie's was in 1992 with my Grandmother.  I had just moved to Boston and found myself living in a great apartment on Warren Avenue.  Grandma was visiting from Idaho and we were doing some exploring of the city together.  The neighborhood was a bit sketchy and Grandma hung out at the house while I was at work one day.  She went to a hardware store and was told that a lady such as herself shouldn't be wandering around the neighborhood like she was.  All she wanted was a garbage can for my kitchen, and she didn't return to the house without a garbage can.  She was a tough lady and was so named the Little General.

On that trip to Charlie's, I remember thinking that if we did anything wrong, we might be asked to leave.  I was a bit on edge, and would not be lying if I said the waitresses were a bit intimidating.  There was one particular lady, an African American woman, who seemed quite stern but smiley.  This of course was long before I knew everyone by name.   My recollection of that first shared table experience was most colored, if I may, by my Grandmother telling the African American women that she seemed a very nice black girl.  Michelle, as I later found her name to be, rose up straight and I thought she was going to body roll my sweet, little Grandma.  I let Grandma do the talking and she explained, with only one or two more poorly used generalities, that she was from Idaho and that seemed reason enough in the whole scheme for my Grandma's words.  My Grandma was the one who rose up and gave Michelle a hug.  We left with big smiles.

And 22 years later almost to the day, I'm back at Charlie's eating my favorite Raspberry Scramble.  Actually, they are pancakes.  Three of them.  I call it a Raspberry Scramble, but a scramble is actually eggs, and a raspberry omelet doesn't sound all that tasty.  So raspberry pancakes it is.  They are thick and moist almost like cake and I eat them with just butter.  Pancakes are probably my second favorite breakfast after hash of course.

They were so plentiful, or I was just full, but I wrapped them in foil and had them for breakfast the next morning.

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